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The Labrador Eskimo 


E. W. Hawkes 



No. 163] 











The Labrador Eskimo 


E. W. Hawkes 



No. 1637 



Preface ix 

Historical sketch of the Labrador Eskimo 1 

The Skraelings 1 

Early relations with the French and English 2 

Cartwright and the southern Eskimo 6 

The work of the Moravian missions 10 

Labrador: physical characteristics and distribution of population 14 

Character of the country 14 

Ancient distribution of Eskimo 16 

Statistics of Eskimo population 19 

Tribal divisions and place-names 22 

Racial boundaries 24 

Hunting territories 25 

Climate 25 

Ice 26 

Snow 27 

The Eskimo year 28 

Names of stars 29 

Food 29 

Varieties of Labrador seal and other sea mammals 30 

Land mammals '. 32 

Minor foods 33 

Berries 34 

Medicinal plants 36 

Clothing 38 

Dickys 38 

Ornamentation 39 

Trousers. 40 

Socks 41 

Boots 41 

Shoes 41 

Dressing and making up of skins 42 

Dressing deerskin 42 

Smoking deerskin 42 

Dressing and making of sealskin clothing 43 

Boots 43 

Vamps 46 

Shoes 47 

Waterproof stitching 48 

Mittens 48 

Waterproof mittens : 50 

Cap 52 


Trousers 53 

Cartridge bag 54 

Men's tobacco-bag 54 

Woman's tobacco-bag 55 

Dicky 56 

Houses 58 

Snow-houses 58 

Stone iglus 60 

Whalebone houses 61 

Camping houses 62 

The summer tent 63 

Transportation 64 

The dog-sled and dog driving 64 

The umiak 68 

The kayak ." 71 

Hunting and fishing 73 

Hunting weapons 73 

The equipment of the kayaker 73 

Sealing harpoon 74 

Lance 76 

Seal-hook 76 

Bird-spear 76 

The bow and arrow 79 

The bow-case 81 

Hunting large game 82 

Hunting small game 85 

Traps 85 

Snares 86 

Fishing 87 

Household tools and utensils 88 

Lamps and kettles 88 

Dishes and other receptacles 92 

Scrapers 93 

Knives 94 

The drill 97 

Pipes 98 

Needle-cases 99 

Art 100 

Work in ivory 100 

Work in wood 101 

Work in cloth and fur 101 

Work in basketry 102 

Tattooing 105 

Social organization and social customs 108 

Punishment and murder 108 

Headmen.. 110 



Birth Ill 

Childhood 113 

Marriage 114 

Morality 115 

Death 118 

Burial 119 

Games ; 120 

Games of chance 120 

Cat's cradle 121 

Dolls 122 

Music 122 

Religion 124 

Torngarsoak and Superguksoak 124 

The Inua and Tornait 127 

The angekut 128 

Divining 132 

Head-lifting 133 

Taboos 133 

Fetishes and amulets 135 

The life after death 136 

Ceremonies 139 

Whaling festival 139 

The "sculping" (skinning) dance 140 

Mythology 141 

The migration legend 142 

The Tunnit 143 

Tunnit houses 146 

Tunnit boots 146 

Interpretation of the evidence 146 

The last of the Tunnit 148 

Alasuq and the giant 150 

An Adlit tale 151 

The girl who lived among the Adlit 151 

Origin of man and the animals 152 

Origin of the winds and rain 153 

The heavenly regions 153 

The regions below 153 

The place where the caribou live 154 

How the trout was made 155 

The quarrel of the crow and the gull 155 

The girl who married a whale 155 

The story of the sun and moon 156 

The story of the fox-wife 156 

The son who killed his mother 157 

The orphan boy and the moon man 158 

The story of the lame hunter 159 



The thinking image 159 

Origin of the walrus and caribou 160 

The owl and the raven 160 

The origin of the sea-pigeons 161 

How the caribou lost their large eyes 161 

Eskimo incantation for game 162 

Phonetic system 163 

Bibliography 164 


Map 156 A, No. 1560. Eskimo tribes of the Labrador peninsula, 

northern Quebec in pocket. 

Plate I. A. Eskimo girl in duffle dicky and moleskin trousers .. 167 

B. Killinek Eskimo woman in cotton dicky and seal- 

skin trousers, back view 167 

C. Killinek Eskimo woman, front view 167 

II. A. Caribou skin dicky from Cape Chidley 169 

B. Man's sealskin dicky from Cape Wolstenholme. . . 169 

III. A. (a) Combination legging and boot from east coast 

of Hudson bay; (b) skin boot from Hamilton 

inlet; (c) skin boot from Davis inlet 171 

B. Sealskin trousers from Cape Wolstenholme 171 

IV. (a) Child's sealskin bonnet; (b) baby's fur cap; (c) 

hareskin cap; (d) birdskin cap; (e) squirrel- 
skin cap 173 

V. (a) Beaded breast ornament; (b) fur "beads"; (c) 

pair of ear ornaments; (d) beaded band 175 

VI. (a) Gut raincoat; (b) gut trousers 177 

VII. (a) Slipper worn inside boot; (b) corrugated sole; (c) 
fur slipper; (d) child's shoe; (e) woman's shoe; 

(f) caribou moccasin 179 

VIII. A. (a) Tobacco bag with pipe cleaner; (b) caribou 

skin bag; (c) cloth shot bag; (d) loonskin bag. 181 
B. (a) Sealskin waterproof mitten; (b) man's tanned 
deerskin mitten; (c and d) pair of embroidered 

cloth mittens 181 

IX. (a) Bag made from leg of deer; (b) sealskin bag 183 

X. (a, b, c, and d) Sealskin mittens 185 

XI. A. Completed snow-house with boy sitting on key- 
block 187 

B. Caribou skin tents of Eskimo fishermen, Cape 

Chidley 187 

XII. Eskimos of Great Whale river, Labrador 189 

XIII. A. Dog-team viewed from behind 191 

B. Process of building a komatik 191 


Plate XIV. A. (a) Model of kayak, from Norton sound, Alaska; 

(b) model of kayak from Ungava bay 193 

B. (a) Model of komatik with seal load, from Cape 

Chidley; (b) wooden model of sleigh or koma- 
tik, from Labrador 193 

XV. (a) Model of kayak; (b) model of deerskin baidarka; 

(c) model of umiak or sealskin boat 195 

XVI. (a-e) Arrows from northern coast of Labrador; (f) bow 

from Labrador; (g) bow from east coast of 
Labrador; (h) bow from northern coast of 

Labrador 197 

XV.TI. (a) Quiver; (b) ptarmigan snare; (c) sling 199 

XVIII. A. (a) Stone lamp from Cape Chidley; (b) large stone 

lamp with ridge, from Okkak, Labrador. . . . 201 
B. (a) Small stone lamp from Okkak, Labrador; (b) 
stone lamp from Cape Chidley; (c) model of 
soapstone lamp from Okkak; (d) soapstone 

lamp from Chesterfield inlet 201 

XIX. (a) Stone kettle from Cape Chidley; (b) large stone 

kettle from Okkak, Labrador 203 

XX. (a and b) Model of sealskin dish and bailer; (c) small 
kettle from Cape Chidley; (d) model of stone 

kettle from Baffin island 205 

XXI. (a) Large wooden spoon from Hamilton inlet; (b) 
wooden spoon from Hamilton inlet; (c) 

wooden dish from Hamilton inlet 207 

XXII. A. (a) Scraper made from leg bone of reindeer from 
Eskimo point; (b) ditto from Mistake bay; 
(c and d) "firestones" of pyrites; (e) bone 

scraper from Hudson bay 209 

B. (a) Ivory snow-knife with bone handle; (b) ulu or 

woman's knife; (c) stone knife 209 

XXIII. A. (a) Small whetstone from Cape Chidley; (b) beaver 
tooth knife for carving; (c) slate knife ; (dand 
e) crooked knives from Cape Chidley; (f) 

whetstone from Cape Wolstenholme 211 

B. (a and b) Bow-drill (mouthpiece, drill, and bow); 
(c) caribou horn-handled awl or knife; (d and 
e) knives with horn handles, from Eskimo 

point 211 

XXIV. (a-f) Ivory needle cases; (g) ivory comb; (h) ivory 

pendant; (i) stone pipe 213 

XXV. (a) Ivory carving of man in kayak with hunting outfit; 
(b) ivory carving of Eskimo woman; (c) 
ivory carving of Eskimo man ; (d and e) ivory 
sled and dog-team 215 



Plate XXVI. (a and b) Ivory carvings of knives; (c) ivory carving 
of powder horn; (d) ivory model of gun; (e) 
ivory model of boots; (f) ivory model of bag. . 217 
XXVII. A. (a) Ivory carving of whale; (b) ivory carving of 
walrus; (c) ivory model of seal; (d) stone 
carving of fish; (e) ivory carving of narwhal; 

(f) ivory carving of white whale 219 

B. (a) Ivory carving of fox; (b) ivory carving of polar 
bear; (c) ivory carving of reindeer; (d) ivory 
carving of bear; (e) ivory carving of musk-ox; 
(f and g) ivory carvings of wolves on the trail 219 

XXVIII. A and B. Eskimo girls in winter costume 221 

XXIX. A. (a) Tobacco pouch; (b) child's moccasin 223 

B. (a) Man's fur mitten with fur applique work; (b 
and c) sealskin tobacco pouches; (d) sealskin 

tobacco bag 223 

XXX. Coiled basketry from Hamilton inlet 225 

XXXI. A and B. Coiled basketry from Hamilton inlet 227 

XXXII. (a) Ivory "cup and ball" game; (b) six ivory dominoes; 

(c) two sets of ivory ducks belonging to game; 

(d) miniature human figures used in game. . . . 229 

XXXIII. (a) Doll representing woman, from Chesterfield inlet; 

(b) doll representing woman from east coast 
of Labrador; (c) doll representing man from 
east coast of Labrador; (d) doll representing 
woman from Baffin island 231 

XXXIV. (a) Feet of horned owl, used as amulet ; (b and c) 

soapstone figures used as fetishes 233 

XXXV. A. Eskimo walled grave, Baffin island 235 

B. Eskimo women at Moravian mission in northern 

Labrador cutting up white whales 235 

Figure 1. Pattern of waterproof skin boot 45 

2. Pattern of sealskin slipper for boot 47 

3. Pattern of sealskin mitten 48 

4. Pattern of deerskin mitten 49 

5. Pattern of waterproof mitten 51 

6. Pattern of cap 52 

7. Pattern of trousers 53 

8. Pattern of cartridge bag 54 

9. Pattern of old style woman's tobacco pouch 55 

10. Pattern of atige 57 

11. Camp circles in Labrador 62 

12. Detail of masonry of ungaluk in Suglasuk bay 62 

13. Double bridle and dog toggles from Labrador 66 

14. Dog- whip from east coast of Hudson bay 67 



Figure 15. Harpoon with line and shaft, from Ungava 75 

16. Manner of attaching the two principal parts of the harpoon 75 

17. Killing lance, from Cape Wolstenholme, Labrador 77 

18. Seal-hook, from Cape Wolstenholme, Labrador 77 

19. (a) Bird-spear, from Cape Wolstenholme, Labrador 77 

(b) Bird-dart with two sets of bone points, from Great Whale 

river, Labrador 77 

20. Throwing-stick from Cape Wolstenholme, Labrador 78 

21. Spear thrower, from Great Whale river, Labrador 78 

22. Arrow, showing method of attaching point and shank, from 

Great Whale river, Labrador 80 

23. Arrow, showing method of attaching point and shank, from 

northern coast of Labrador 80 

24. Arrow, from Great Whale river, Labrador 80 

25. Ivory harpoon head with iron point, from Joksut, Labrador 82 

26. Bone lance head with iron point, from Eskimo point, west 

coast of Hudson bay 84 

27. Trout spear, from Cape Wolstenholme, Labrador 88 

28. End of limestone kettle, from Coats island 90 

29. Bow scraper made from jaw-bone of a narwhal, from Cape 

Chidley 93 

30. Tattooing on leg and forearm of woman, from southern 

Baffin island 102 

31. Women's tattoo designs 106 

32. Men's and women's tattoo designs 107 



The following account of the life of the Labrador Eskimo 
is the result of a trip undertaken in the season of 1914 to the 
coasts of Labrador, for the Geological Survey of Canada. As 
the author had already an intimate knowledge of the general 
culture of the Eskimo from a three years' residence among them 
in Alaska, an attempt was made to cover as much territory as 
possible, so as to get a comprehensive view of the culture of the 
Eskimo of the entire coast of the Labrador peninsula, and to note 
its variations from other sections. With this end in view, the 
early part of the summer was spent in Sandwich bay and Hamil- 
ton inlet, in an endeavour to ascertain the southern limit of 
the Labrador Eskimo, and the remainder of the summer and 
autumn in company with the Carnegie Magnetic Expedition 1 
which continued up the coast as far as Cape Chidley, and then 
visited both sides of Hudson strait, and the east coast of Hudson 
bay as far south as Cape Dufferin. This completed the circuit 
of the Labrador peninsula. The west coast of Hudson bay, 
between Port Churchill and Chesterfield inlet, was also visited, 
as well as several islands in the bay. A considerable ethnological 
and archaeological collection was obtained from these districts. 

This paper does not attempt to offer a complete ethnology 
of the Labrador Eskimo, but to bring out the main facts of their 
life, and particularly those differences which mark them off 
as a separate division of the Eskimo world. After all, the 
ethnological divisions of the Eskimo are geographical rather 
than cultural. The author has drawn on his own experience 
for comparisons with the western Eskimo and on standard 
authors for other sections. 

The ethnological literature on the Labrador Eskimo is 
scanty and devoted to sections of Labrador rather than to the 
Eskimo of the Labrador peninsula as a whole. Turner's inter- 
esting account is limited to Ungava; the Moravian writers have 
given us some descriptions of Eskimo life on the east coast, 

'Thanks are due to Captain Peters, leader of the expedition, for many courtesies. 

from their own standpoint; there is little information on the 
west coast Eskimo except scattered references and a portion in 
C. H. and A. T. Leith's "A Summer and Winter on Hudson 
Bay." It is hoped that the present work will bring out the 
salient features of the Labrador Eskimo culture and serve for 
comparative study. 

The Labrador Eskimo. 



A correct understanding of the present habitat and con- 
dition of the Labrador Eskimo is hardly obtainable without a 
knowledge of their past history and the remarkable vicissitudes 
of fortune through which they have passed. The wiping out 
by the combined whites and Indians, of the entire southern 
branch south of Hamilton inlet, which remained hostile and pagan 
to the last, and the careful nourishing of the northern branch 
by Christian missionaries, form one of the many paradoxes 
with which the history of native races in their relation to the 
whites abounds. 

The first mention of Eskimo, supposed to inhabit the present 
Labrador, occurs in the Saga of Eric the Red, where the en- 
counter of the Northmen with the Skraelings (which should 
remind us that the Eskimo were probably the first people met by 
the whites in America), is thus described : 

"They saw a great number of skin canoes, and staves were 
brandished from their boats with a noise like flails, and they 
were revolved in the same direction in which the sun moves." 1 

This is evidently an attempt of the Norse singer to describe 
something so unusual to their economy as the appearance of 
Eskimo in kayaks (skin boats). The sound of the double- 
bladed paddles striking the water might be likened to the action 
of flails ; while the motion in the air, dipping on one side and then 
the other, would give them the appearance of revolving to an 

1 It is interesting to note in passing that the movement "as the sun goes" is characteristic 
of the turning of the dancers in certain Eskimo ceremonial dances, and that the actual words. 
' 'Turn as the light of day (the sun) goes," occur in one of their ceremonies. See Nelson, Eskimo 
bout Bering strait, 18th Annual Report B.A.E., p. 372. 

observer to whom the sight was unusual. Farther on the 
Saga reads : 

"A great multitude of Skraeling boats were discovered 
approaching from the south, and all their staves waved in a di- 
rection contrary to the sun." The apparent contradiction is 
easily explained. In the first case the kayaks were seen approach- 
ing from the north and in the second case from the south, when 
the apparent motion of the kayak paddles would be reversed. 

Certain writers have attempted to associate this description 
of the Skraelings with the Beothuks or the Micmac Indians 
but the description of "skin canoes" and revolving paddles 
would not apply in this region to any other people than the 

The difficulty of finding the Eskimo as far south as Vinland 
is not great, when we remember that in the sixteenth century 
they inhabited the north shore of the St. Lawrence and might 
have extended their wanderings farther south at an earlier 
period. Weapons closely resembling those used by the Eskimo 
have been dug up in Ontario 1 and New York State. 2 The 
specimens in the Beothuk collection in the museum at St. Johns, 
said to be from the Newfoundland coast, show a strong Eskimo 
influence. In each case this influence may be due to cultural 
borrowing by neighbouring tribes, but when we remember the 
summer visits of the Labrador Eskimo to the north of New- 
foundland, it is not unlikely that a party may have been seen 
by the Norsemen, particularly as the location of this description 
has never been definitely ascertained to be farther south. 


The next historical trace of the Labrador Eskimo is to 
be found in the account of the voyage of John Cabot. He saw 
some of the inhabitants of the new land he discovered (presum- 
ably Labrador), and brought back "snares for game and needles 
for making nets." Harisse, the foremost authority on the early 
exploration of Labrador, considers that these are Eskimo 

1 Wintemberg, Bone and harpoon heads of the Ontario Indians, Archaeological Report of 
the Provincial Museum, Toronto, 1905. 

1 Verbal information from Alanson Skinner, Mus. of the Am. Indian. 

utensils. Gosling, on the other hand, in his able and exhaustive 
history of Labrador, contends that the Labrador Eskimo had 
no knowledge of catching salmon by means of nets, and had 
to be instructed in the art by the Moravian missionaries in 1772. L 
It is possible that in this case the usually careful author confuses 
civilized with native implements. He is certainly mistaken 
when he goes on to say that "among the implements of the 
Eskimo, which have been many times carefully described, 
snares and nets are not mentioned." 2 The use of nets for seal 
and salmon and of snares for birds is common in Alaska, 3 but 
rare among the eastern Eskimo. Still, John Davis mentions 
the use of nets in Greenland in 1586, 4 and Thalbitzer in his recent 
publication on the East Greenland Eskimo 5 is of the opinion 
that nets were used in Greenland in early days. Ancient 
implements for making nets have been found there according 
to Glahn and Fabricius. Thalbitzer 6 thinks there is a close 
relation between the Labrador Eskimo and the tribes of south 
and central Greenland, due to former contact, which shows in 
phonetic similarities. If this is true, there may have been a 
cultural borrowing, particularly of so useful an instrument as 
the net. Boas 7 mentions the use of the net by the Labrador 
Eskimo, which the Baffin-islanders, who belong culturally 
with the north Greenland group, do not employ. Turner 
ascribes the use of the net in Ungava to European influence. 8 
It seems probable, then, that the Labrador Eskimo may have 
made nets in older times, but given up 'their manufacture when 
they could procure the civilized article so much more easily 
in their summer raids to the south. The Moravians mention 
that when they went among them, they found the Labrador 
Eskimo well supplied with fishing gear and nets, the results 
of their plundering trips to the Gulf of St. Lawrence. 

It is generally conceded by historical students that, even 
if Cabot landed first in Newfoundland, he continued up the 

1 Gosling, Labrador, its discovery, exploration and d velopment, p. 29. 

'- Ibid. p. 30. 

Nelson, The Eskimo about Bering strait, 18th Annual Report B.A.E., pp. 185 sqq. 

4 "They make nets to take their fish of the finne of the whale." Hakluyt's Voyages, p. 782. 

1 Thalbitzer, The Ammassalik Eskimo, Copenhagen, 1914, p. 402. 

Thalbitzer, ibid., p. 685. 

7 Boas, The Central Eskimo, 6th Annual Report B.A.E., p. 516. 

Murdoch, quoting Turner, p. 252. 

Labrador coast as far as Hamilton inlet, where he could have 
procured "snares for game and needles for net-making" from the 
Eskimo of that vicinity. 

Sebastian Cabot, son of John Cabot, in his memorable 
voyage brought back with him "three savage men," who "were 
clothed in the beastes skinnes and ate raw flesh, and spake such 
speech that no man could understand them"; these are unde- 
niably Eskimo. 

Curiously enough, Jacques Cartier does not mention meeting 
any Eskimo in the Strait of Belle Isle. Gosling 1 takes this as 
evidence that the Eskimo did not begin to frequent the Gulf of 
St. Lawrence until drawn thither by the desire to obtain iron 
tools and fishing gear from the Basque, French, and English 
fishermen; but the inference is not conclusive. It might have 
been an off year for Eskimo migration, due to disease or some 
religious taboo, as often happens, or Cartier might have simply 
missed the wandering bands. One thing is certain; when the 
French began settling on the coast in 1702 they found the Es- 
kimo in considerable numbers on the north shore of the Gulf of 
St. Lawrence, as far west as Mingan. 

The first attempt to found a permanent settlement on the 
Labrador coast was by Courtema'nche, about 1704, who estab- 
lished a fishing and trading post at Bay Philypeaux, now Bodore. 
His concession extended from Kegashet (now the Kegashka 
river) to Kessessasskiou (Hamilton inlet). Here, with a party 
of forty French-Canadian servants and thirty or forty Monta- 
gnais hunters, he lived the life of a grand seigneur, carrying on an 
extensive fishery, and trading with the natives. He was greatly 
annoyed by the Eskimo in the establishment of his fishing sta- 
tions. During the winter, they tore down his stages, destroyed 
his nets, and stole his boats. He tried to make peace with them, 
but was unsuccessful. The number of Eskimo in southern 
Labrador at this time must have been considerable. A con- 
temporary anonymous author estimated them at 30,000. 2 

1 Gosling, Op. cit., pp. 165-166. 

1 This number is evidently an exaggeration. 3,000 would probably be nearer the actual 
number. Courtemanche writes that a band who visited him in 1716 numbered about 800. 
Palliser made peace at Chateau in 1765 with 400 Eskimo, which may be considered the sur- 
vivors, at that date, of the southern bands. 

The Eskimo had compelled the Basques to give up their whale 
fishery in the strait, and kept up a continual and savage 
warfare with the French and Montagnais. The unknown writer 
mentioned above, who has left a quaint and charming description 
of the life of the French settlement, gives it as his opinion that 
"they (the Eskimo) fly from Europeans because they have been 
maltreated, fired on, and killed, and if they attack and kill 
Europeans it is only in way of reprisal." 

Courtemanche was succeeded in 1717 by his son-in-law 
Brouage. His reports are an account of continual strife with the 
Eskimo. Brouage learned the Eskimo language from a woman 
taken captive in Courtemanche's time, and relates some marvel- 
lous tales which he obtained from her. He speaks of one tribe 
who were dwarfs, 2 or 3 feet high, but remarkably fierce and 
active. Have we to do here with the Agdlit, or dog-people, of 
Eskimo mythology ? Another tribe had white ( ?) hair from the 
time of their birth (possibly the Bear-people) ; another tribe had 
one leg, one arm, and one eye (the Illokoq, "longitudinally split 
person" of Eskimo myths ?). On Brouage's death, the post was 
abandoned. About the same time Labrador, together with the 
rest of Canada, fell into the hands of the English. 

During the English occupation of Labrador, the Eskimo 
continued their depredations in the Strait of Belle Isle. 
Bands of them came down each summer, ostensibly to trade, but 
in reality to carry off everything they could lay hands on. Their 
system of attack was to creep up on the unsuspecting fishermen 
in a dense fog, and so terrify them with their unearthly yells 
that they would abandon their property and flee. At other 
times, when a party presented a bold front, the Eskimo would 
advance and engage in trade, but when they had thrown their 
adversaries off their guard for a moment, they would attack them 
and kill the whole crew. They told the Moravians that they used 
to carry knives and arrows for such purposes 1 concealed in their 
clothing and kayaks. 

The fishermen were not behind in retaliation, and shot and 
plundered small parties of Eskimo at sight. There was probably 

1 Courtemanche, writing in 1716, mentions seeing firearms, probably plunder, in possession 
of the Eskimo; but it is doubtful if they knew how to use them. 

as much wrong on one side as on the other. Whether the Eskimo 
or the whites began the trouble originally cannot be ascertained 
at this late day. The Eskimo of early Labrador appear to have 
been an exceedingly truculent race, as witness their attacks on 
early explorers and missionaries, and a knowledge of the terror 
they inspired would not make them less savage. But the re- 
prisals made on them could not remedy the situation. Sir 
Hugh Palliser, the Governor of Newfoundland, who assumed 
charge of Labrador on its transfer to that colony, had the wis- 
dom to see this, and in a proclamation issued in 1765, strictly 
forbade further plundering and killing of the Eskimo, laying the 
hostile attitude of the natives to the "imprudent, treacherous, 
or cruel conduct of some people who have resorted to the coast." 
Palliser went further and visited the Eskimo himself, and con- 
cluded a peace with some four or five hundred of them at Pitts 
harbour, 1 which, thanks to his wise and firm attitude, became 
lasting. In the achievement of this happy purpose, Sir Hugh 
was greatly assisted by the influence of Sir George Cartwright, 
among the southern Eskimo, and that of the Moravian Brethren 
among those north of Hamilton inlet. 


Sir George Cartwright was a particular friend and associate 
of Governor Palliser. After seeing some naval service on the 
Newfoundland coast, he conceived the idea of settling in Lab- 
rador. He entered into partnership with Lieut. Lucas, who had 
acquired a knowledge of Eskimo, with the intention of carrying 
on a peaceable trade with the Eskimo and engaging in cod and 
salmon fishing. He set up an establishment at Cape Charles 
in 1770. On his arrival in Labrador, he began his journal of 
"Transactions and Events During the Residence of Nearly 
Sixteen Years on the Labrador," which was issued in 1792 in 
three large quarto volumes. In his journal he sets down with the 
utmost frankness and candour the daily transactions of the 
post and his opinion of the people with whom he came in con- 
tact. This work deserves to be classed with the narratives of 
those explorers of new lands, like Franklin and Richardson, who 
were not only explorers, but scientific observers as well, of the 

1 Chateau bay. 

manners and customs of the people with whom they came in 
contact. To Cartwright must be given the additional praise 
of saying that he seemed to be one of those few white men who 
understood how to approach natives and win their confidence. 

Immediately on the arrival of the partners, Lucas went 
north and returned with a family of Eskimo, who nearly ate the 
post out of supplies during the winter. Fortunately they were 
not over-dainty in their choice of provisions, any more than the 
modern Eskimo. Cartwright speaks of giving them, when the 
supplies were low, "a skin bag filled with seal's phrippers (flip- 
pers), pieces of flesh, and rands of seal fat; it was a complete 
mixture of oil and corruption with an intolerable stench, and no 
people on earth, I think, except themselves, would have eaten the 

The following July, a considerable number of Eskimo ap- 
peared in the harbour. Cartwright, in order to inspire confidence 
in them, went boldly over to the island where they were en- 
camped, sent his people away, and began trading with them alone. 
The Eskimo responded nobly to such treatment, and he never 
had any serious trouble with them, although his immediate 
predecessor (Darby) had been forced to abandon the post on 
account of their aggressiveness. Cartwright himself attributed 
his success in dealing with the Eskimo to his always treating 
them fairly and firmly. He never allowed them to cheat or 
rob him, and on the other hand was careful to see that they were 
always satisfied. A finishing touch was his habit of entering 
into their sports and games with as much zest as they showed 
themselves. Here his strong physique stood him in good 

In a quaint rhyming letter to his brother Charles, Cart- 
wright describes his relations with the Eskimo: 
"The Eskimo from ice and snow now free, 

In shallops and whale boats go to sea; 

In peace they rove along the pleasant shore, 

In plenty live nor do they wish for more. 

Thrice happy race; strong drink nor gold they know; 

What in their hearts they think, their faces show. 

Of manners gentle, in their dealing just, 


Their plighted promise safely you may trust. 
Mind you deceive them not, for well they know 
The friend sincere from the designing foe. 
They once were deemed a people fierce and rude, 
Their savage hands in human blood imbued; 
But by my care (for I must claim the merit) 
The world now owes that virtue they inherit. 
Not a more honest or more generous race 
Can bless a sovereign or a nation grace. 
With these I frequent pass the social day, 
No broils, no feuds, but all is sport and play. 
My will's their law, and justice is my will. 
Thus friends we always were and friends are still." 

With an idea of impressing the Eskimo with the importance 
of the English, whom they held in contempt with all other 
"kablunait," Cartwright took a few of his oldest Eskimo friends 
to London. They were greatly astonished at the sights they saw, 
but soon grew homesick. One said, "Oh, I am tired! Here are 
too many houses, too much smoke, too many people. Labrador 
is very good; seals are plentiful there. I wish I was back again." 
The inevitable happened. They all contracted smallpox, and 
only one woman, Caubvick, lived to see her old home. 

On Cartwright's return to Labrador, they were met by a 
large crowd of Eskimo who had gathered to greet their friends. 
When only Caubvick appeared, their grief was unrestrained. 
"Many of them snatched up stones and beat themselves on the 
face and head until they became shocking spectacles." "In 
short," says Cartwright, "the violent frantic expressions of grief 
were such that I could not help participating with them so far 
as to shed tears myself most plentifully." But it is quite char- 
acteristic of the Eskimo that "they no sooner observed my 
emotion than, mistaking it for apprehensions which I was under 
for fear of their resentment, they instantly seemed to forget their 
own feelings to relieve those of mine. They pressed around me, 
and said and did all in their power to convince me that they did 
not entertain any suspicions of my conduct toward their departed 

Caubvick, on her recovery, had refused to have her hair cut, 
a common Eskimo superstition which had become matted 
with the disease. Naturally, she flew into a passion whenever 
Cartwright proposed it. The following summer he records that 
one of his men came on an Eskimo camp in Ivuktoke bay 
(Hamilton inlet) where a whole family had died of smallpox, 
and, from a medal found on the spot, he recognized the family 
as Caubvick's. 

Undeterred by this sad lesson, Cartwright took a small 
Eskimo boy of twelve years with him on his next trip to England, 
intending to educate him that he might be useful in communi- 
cating with his people. To ward off the danger of smallpox, he 
had him inoculated. But the poor lad succumbed to the treat- 
ment in three days, which may have been as fatal to him as the 
disease itself to a European. Cartwright was greatly grieved by 
his failures, and probably brought these inflictions on his native 
neighbours through a mistaken generosity and ignorance of the 
fatal effects of new climates and diseases on the Eskimo rather 
than through any intentional selfishness or unkindness on his 

In 1775, Cartwright moved farther north to Sandwich bay, 
where he continued to prosper amid an abundance of fish and 
game. One curious fact of natural history that he mentions is 
seeing polar bear diving after salmon. The site that he chose 
is now occupied by a Hudson Bay post which bears his name, and 
a monument to him and his brother John stands in the little 
cemetery near by. Here Cartwright carried on a fishery 
and trade with the Eskimo, until business troubles took 
him to England, where he died. A few of the old Eskimo of 
this district (see footnote, page 15) still survive; the rest of the 
native population mixed with the "planters" or early servants 
of the trading companies, many of whose present descend ants 
show an admixture of Eskimo blood. They retain many of the 
old hunting superstitions 1 of the former Eskimo, and, with fishing 
in summer and trapping in winter, lead practically the same 

1 One of these survivals is the custom of cutting off the tip of the heart and liver of a seal 
when it is killed, and throwing it back into the water. The only explanation given is that it 
is "for luck," which probably means that it is the old Eskimo idea of a return of a portion of the 
vital part of the seal to the sea, which will ensure its rebirth in its kind and consequent return 
to the hunter. 


life. Certain articles of Eskimo clothing, such as the "dicky," 1 
or hooded frock, the waterproof skin boot, and the cartridge 
bag, are still in use among them. 

For the only record of the ancient names of the old divisions 
of southern Eskimo as gathered by Lieut. Curtis, see page 18, 
"Distribution of Population." 


No account of the history of the Labrador Eskimo would be 
complete without- due mention of the remarkable work of the 
Moravian missionaries among them. To these devoted followers 
of the lowly Nazarene the Eskimo of the northern Labrador 
coast owe not only their salvation but their present existence. 
So closely have the Moravians been identified with them for the 
past hundred and fifty years, that in speaking of the Labrador 
Eskimo we are accustomed to apply this name to the mission 

The Moravian Missions have been severely criticized for the 
trading establishments which they run side by side with their 
missions. But for this they can plead extenuating circumstances, 
as will be shown, and the administration of spiritual and secular 
matters is kept entirely separate. The principal thing in their 
work which appeals to an ethnologist is the fact that, as a mission- 
ary body, they have encouraged the Eskimo to continue to live 
as natives that is, to eat native food and wear native clothing 
which wise position has been instrumental in keeping the Eskimo 
alive in this district, while they have utterly perished in the 
south. The general attitude that the Moravians have taken 
towards the Eskimo, of a not- too-familiar kindness, and of 
founding their authority on it instead of on force, is also interest- 
ing to a worker among native tribes, particularly as regards the 
success with which it has been attended. 

Their successful work among the Greenland Eskimo en- 
couraged the Moravians to turn their attention to the Labrador 
Eskimo. As early as 1750, Erhardt, one of their missionaries, 

1 A corruption of the Eskimo o' tige. 


wrote to the Bishop: "My dear Johannes: thou knowest that 
I am an old Greenland traveller. I have also an amazing 
affection for these countries, Indians, and other barbarians, 
and it would be a source of the greatest joy if the Saviour would 
discover to me that He had chosen me and would make me fit 
for this service." A vessel was fitted out in 1752, and Erhardt 
chosen as interpreter and supercargo. Four other missionaries 
accompanied him. On July 31 they arrived on the Labrador coast, 
in what is now known as Fords bight, latitude 55 10'. Here 
they landed and began the erection of a station. The Eskimo 
appeared friendly, being particularly pleased to meet a white 
man who could speak their own language, and a brisk barter 
trade was carried on. On September 5, the vessel, which was 
named the Hope, went north for further trade. Ten days later 
it returned with the sad news that Erhardt and a party which 
included the captain and five of the crew as well, had been mur- 
dered on the 13th on going ashore to trade with a strange tribe 
of Eskimo. Consequently the other missionaries decided to 
abandon the station. 

The seed of the gospel had been sown in blood. It remained 
for a Labrador apostle to be raised up similar to the great mis- 
sionary of Greenland, Egede. He was forthcoming in the person 
of Jens Haven. Jens Haven was a poor German carpenter, who 
knew nothing of Eskimo and little English. Yet, when he had 
once decided to take up this work, he set himself to accomplish 
it with a determination which overcame all difficulties. In 
1758 he went to Greenland and learned the Eskimo language. 
In 1762, he declared his intention to the Moravian church, and, 
after much discussion, they permitted him to make the attempt, 
but could offer no aid. Haven made his way to London, 
where he met Palliser, the newly-elected Governor of Newfound- 
land, who gave him not only his hearty sympathy, but the neces- 
sary assistance. 

Haven was assisted in getting to the Labrador shore on his 
first trip by the famous Captain Cook. He was greatly disap- 
pointed in not seeing the Eskimo at Chateau bay, as they had 
left the district. But at Carpunt, a few days later, one returned, 


and Haven in his Journal 1 thus described their momentous 

"I called out to him in Greenlandish that he should come 
to me, that I had words to say to him, and that I was his good 
friend. He was astonished at my speech, and answered in 
broken French; but I begged him to speak his own language, 
which I understood, and to bring his countrymen, as I wished 
to speak to them also; on which he went to them, and cried with 
a loud voice, 'Our friend has come.' 

"I had hardly put on my Greenland clothes, when five 
of them arrived in their own boats. I went to meet them, 
and said, 'I have long desired to see you!' They replied, 'Here 
is an innuit.' I answered, 'I am your countryman and friend!' 
They rejoined, 'Thou art indeed our countryman.' ' 

This successful beginning resulted in Governor Palliser 
sending Haven to England with a recommendation to the Board 
of Trade for assistance. Aid was readily granted, and the next 
year Haven, with three other Moravian missionaries, including 
Christian Drachardt, were returned to continue the work. 
The Eskimo were again met and gave further evidence of their 
pleasure at meeting white men who were their friends, and could 
speak their language. This work made possible the peace 
which Palliser was enabled to make with the Eskimo at Chateau 
the following year. 

Seven years delay ensued before the work of settlement 
was taken up, principally due to the Moravians' demand for 
100,000 acres of land for each settlement, which appeared 
excessive to Palliser. The reason given by the Moravians 
for this request was not the value of the land, which was practi- 
cally worthless, but the establishment of a reservation which 
would keep the Eskimo away from the contaminating influences 
of dissolute whites. 

In 1770, Haven, Drachardt, and Jensen were placed in 
charge of an expedition, which made a settlement at Nain. 
The grant and purpose of the station were explained to the 
Eskimo, who appeared well pleased that the Brethren had 
come to dwell permanently among them. An old acquaintance, 
Segulliak, and a noted Eskimo woman who had been taken to 

Given to Sir Hugh Palliser and preserved at the Record Office, St. John, Nfld. 


England, Mikak, helped to pave the way. A document was drawn 
up which the head men of the Eskimo signed, 1 and a gift was 
made to each family. The party then returned to England. 
The next year a house and stores were brought out and the 
Moravians settled down to their work with earnestness. 

The task of converting heathen, hostile Eskimo into peace- 
fulminded Christians presented manifest difficulties. The habits 
and mental attitude of the Eskimo were so entirely different 
from what was desired that nothing short of a revolution in 
their customs and thought had to be effected. Some of their 
nai've answers to the questions of the missionaries emphasize 
this. One man, when asked if he believed in the Saviour, 
declared that he believed very much, but what he wanted at 
present was a knife. He later took unto himself some additional 
wives, and on being remonstrated with about it, said that 
"he needed them to man his boat," which was a good enough 
Eskimo custom. The idea of blood-revenge cropped out when 
the missionaries spoke of the death of Christ, for the Eskimo 
thought they were "upbraiding them for former murders." 

But native ideas and superstitions proved to be more easily 
overcome than the attraction of the southern white traders, 
who held out the luring bait of tobacco, gew-gaws, and rum. 
Many, even the famous Mikak, succumbed to such evils. It 
was a desire to keep the Eskimo at home, away from the degen- 
erating influences of this contact, which finally led the Moravians 
to establish their trade stores in connexion with their missions. 
The regulations governing native trade are strict, and the price 
paid for native products is low. On the other hand, the Eskimo 
receive good, honest trade goods at a reasonable price. The 
profits of the stores are turned back into the Mission work. 
The missionaries receive the princely salary of 23 a year, 
which "supplies all their needs" and shows plainly enough that 
they are not seeking to lay up treasures on earth. 

1 This must have been the first document signed by the Eskimo in history. 




The Labrador peninsula is divided, roughly speaking, into 
three main districts: (1) the Atlantic coast, commonly known 
as the Labrador coast; (2) the Ungava district, comprising 
Ungava bay and the land drained by the rivers emptying into 
it; and (3) the east coast of Hudson bay with its several large 
tributary streams, which forms the west coast of the peninsula. 
By long-standing custom, initiated by the Newfoundland 
fishermen, the use of the term "Labrador" has come to be 
restricted to the Atlantic coast, so I shall continue to use it in 
that sense in this paper, referring to the second section as Ungava, 
and the third as the east coast of Hudson bay. In dealing 
with the Labrador Eskimo, we are concerned only with the 
coast (they are seldom found farther than 30 miles from the 
shore-line, except during summer hunting trips into the interior), 
so it appears better to adopt current divisions, even though 
they may be a little confusing, than to substitute new terms 
which would be meaningless until generally adopted. 

The Atlantic coast of the Labrador peninsula extends from 
the Strait of Belle Isle at the mouth of the Gulf of St. Lawrence, 
to Cape Chidley, at the western entrance of Hudson strait, 
a distance of some 700 miles. The entire shore is rough and 
rocky, rising from a height of 1,000 feet in southern Labrador 
to lofty cliffs and ranges from 3,000 to 5,000 feet high in the 
northern section 1 . Deep inlets and narrow fiords, fringed by 
groups of little islands, extend almost continuously up the coast, 
offering ideal hunting and fishing grounds to the Eskimo. We 
find them gathered mainly about the trading posts and mission 
stations situated at the head of the larger inlets and bays. 

The Eskimo formerly inhabited the entire Atlantic seaboard 
of Labrador, but at present are found only north of Hamilton 

1 Near Cape Chidley, in the extreme northern portion of the peninsula, are the Tornga'it, 
or "Spirit Mountains," a wild and impressive group, believed by the Eskimo to be the abode 
of To'rngak, or Tornga'rsoak, "the great To'rngak," the chief spirit consulted by their shamans 
(see map). 


inlet 1 at the Moravian stations of Makkovik, Hopedale, Nain, 
Okkak, Hebron, and Killinek (see map). Until quite recently 
(1904, when Killinek was established), a small but hardy band 
of "heathen" Eskimo lived in the neighbourhood of the Hudson's 
Bay Company post at Nachvak. 2 The Moravians had intended 
to establish a station here, but had been forestalled by the 
Hudson's Bay Company. Later they built missions on each 
side of Nachvak, at Ramah and Killinek, and the Nachvak 
post was practically squeezed out of existence. 3 The main body 
of Nachvak Eskimo emigrated to Cape Chidley, although a few 
persisted in their heathen independence and are said to be still 
living near Eclipse harbour. Generally speaking, the Labrador 
Eskimo of the northern Atlantic coast are settled at the Mor- 
avian stations and directly under their control. This has been 
fortunate for them, as, under the watchful care of the good 
Brethren, they have escaped the total destruction which has 
overtaken their kindred of southern Labrador. 

The coast of Ungava bay is quite similar to that of the 
Atlantic, being bold and fringed with islands, but differs in having 
few inlets or good harbours. On the east side of the bay, Eskimo 
are found at the Hudson's Bay Company posts at the mouths of 
the Whale and George rivers. There is a considerable settlement 
at Fort Chimo, at the foot of the bay, near the mouth of the 
Koksoak, where both the Hudson's Bay Company and Revillon 
Freres have large stations. On the west side of Ungava bay 
the French company has a post at Wakeham bay, one of the few 
good harbours in this region. Here and at Hopes Advance 
are long established Eskimo villages. Scattered families are 

1 The author discovered two survivors of the old southern bands of Labrador Eskimo, 
living in Sandwich bay. They were both women and married to white men, but still spoke 
good Eskimo and remembered native stories and customs. One had considerable reputation 
at a conjurer. The former husband of this woman, a famous hunter and doctor named Toma'- 
suk, was the last male descendant of those large marauding parties which the French and 
English explorers met in the Strait of Belle Isle and estimated at the astonishing figure of 

1 There were also a few Eskimo at the Hudson's Bay Company sub-post at Aillik. On the 
abandonment of the post they formed the nucleus of the Moravian settlement at Makkovik. 

1 The early good-will manifest between the Hudson's Bay Company and the Moravians 
was later changed into an intense trade rivalry. However, the relations between the officials 
IB said to have always been most pleasant. 


found from Hopes Advance to the Hudson's Bay Company 
post at Cape Wolstenholme. 

The west coast of the Labrador peninsula or the east coast 
of Hudson bay presents a complete contrast to the Ungava 
and Atlantic seaboard. The bold precipitous coasts give way 
to low-lying shores of limestone. Deep inlets, abounding in 
waterfowl, are replaced by shoal and barren waters, where 
numerous groups of infinitesimal islands, nicknamed the "Sleep- 
ers," render navigation difficult. Good harbours are few and 
far between. The only inlets on this coast are Richmond 
gulf and Mosquito bay. Here a few Eskimo are found scattered 
along the desolate shore. The main body of the population 
is between Cape Smith and Cape Wolstenholme. In summer 
the Eskimo fish in the rivers, or visit the large islands off the 
coast, where game, being only hunted at irregular perious, 
abounds. 1 

Remains of old villages and hunting camps, found on 
Mansel, Nottingham, Coats, and Southampton islands, form 
convincing evidence of a former population of considerable 
size; but the Eskimo are extinct now, and the islands rarely 
visited, except for hunting purposes. The Belcher islands, at 
the foot of the bay, are still inhabited by a wild tribe who visit 
the Hudson's Bay Company post at Great Whale river annually. 
They are said to retain the bird-skin clothing and stone imple- 
ments of the early Labrador Eskimo. 2 


When first discovered by the French, the Eskimo inhabited 
the north shore of the Gulf of St. Lawrence as far west as Mingan. 
They were driven from this locality at the beginning of the 
seventeenth century by the Montagnais Indians, who had been 

1 In the summer of 1914, when the author landed on Coats island, near an old Eskimo 
camp, the game was so tame that it refused to move until shot at. Two polar bears were 
sleeping on opposite hills within a quarter of a mile of the village, and a herd of caribou was 
feeding peacefully nearby. 

The Hudson's Bay Company put a party of Eskimo on Nottingham island last autumn 
and a whaling captain placed another party on Southampton island to take advantage of this 
unusual game supply. 

2 C. H. and A. T. Leith, A summer and winter in Hudson bay, Madison, 1912. 


supplied with firearms by the French. They retreated north- 
eastward to the Strait of Belle Isle, where they maintained 
themselves until about 1760 in a fortified camp on an island near the 
western end. Here they were again attacked and completely 
routed by overpowering numbers of French and Indians. Tra- 
dition places this last battle at Battle harbour, and gives the 
number of Eskimo slain as a thousand souls, which is probably 
an exaggeration. 

The Eskimo were at a distinct disadvantage in the fighting 
on land, as the Indians were in larger numbers and possessed 
superior weapons. But it is said that once the Eskimo could 
draw them away from the coast, the condition was reversed. 
The story still lingers in the vicinity that it was the practice 
of the Eskimo to lure bands of the Indians to the islands adjacent 
to the coast, by a single kayaker acting as a decoy, where the 
main body would descend on them when the Indians were off 
their guard, take possession of their canoes, and massacre the 
whole outfit. A certain island on the Labrador coast is said to 
take its name of Massacre island from such an occasion. 

After their defeat on the south coast, the Eskimo retreated 
northward and established themselves at Hamilton inlet, then 
called Ivuktoke or Eskimo bay. A few stragglers remained in 
Sandwich bay, the next inlet south of Hamilton inlet. Some 
authorities are of the opinion that the Labrador Eskimo never 
settled permanently farther south than Hamilton inlet, and that 
the large bands encountered by early French and English ex- 
plorers were summer voyagers from the north. It is true that 
after this date the Eskimo descended into the strait from their 
strongholds in the north, but it would appear that the presence 
of fortified settlements, camps, and burying grounds south of 
Hamilton inlet, as well as archaeological material extending as far 
south as the state of New York, were evidence of at least a 
scattered population. The Eskimo rarely inhabit a border 
country in heavy numbers, but prefer a screen of hunting ter- 
ritory between themselves and their inveterate enemies, the 
Indians, over which small bands wander with caution. This is 
true of northern Alaska, the Mackenzie and Coppermine districts, 
Hudson bay, and Labrador as well. So we may judge from the 


former numerous appearances of Eskimo in this district, and a 
few still surviving representatives, as well as the very apparent 
mixture of Eskimo blood in many of the resident whites of southern 
Labrador, that the Eskimo in small roving bands, formerly in- 
habited the coast south of Hamilton inlet and part way down the 
Gulf of St. Lawrence. 

There is also a tradition in this region that the Eskimo were 
accustomed to visit the northern coast of Newfoundland yearly, 1 
where they used to trade with the Beothuks. It is improbable 
that they would make the trip to Newfoundland from the country 
north of Hamilton inlet in their skin boats under the ice and 
weather conditions which prevail on the Atlantic coast of Labra- 
dor; but in favourable weather it would have been quite easy 
to have crossed the Strait of Belle Isle from the southern camps. 

Lieutenant Curtis, who made a careful census of the Eskimo 
on the Atlantic coast of Labrador in 1773, fortunately gave the 
old tribal names, one of which was recognized by one of my 
informants as that applied to Belle isle. These tribal names are 
as follows: "from the Straits of Belle Isle going north the first 
tribes were known as: 

The Ogbuctike [Belle isle] 270 persons 

" Nanyoki [Nain ?] 100 " 

Kunedloke [Okkak ?] 360 " 

" Nepawktoot [between Okkak and Hebron]. . . 70 " 

" Cannuklookthuok [Hebron] 345 " 

" Chuckbuck [Saglek bay ?] 140 " 

" Chucklcluit [Lamson bay] 40 " 

" Noolaktucktoke [Ramah] 30 

" Nuchvak [Nachvak] 60 

From Nuchvak north into Ungava bay 210 " 

1,625 persons 

This list is the only one which gives us any idea of the old 
tribal divisions on the Labrador coast. After the establishment 
of the Moravian missions, the Eskimo were gathered around 
these stations and the old tribal divisions broken up. 

1 One of the early edicts of Gov. Palliser forbade the Eskimo crossing to the Newfoundland 
Bide of the Strait of Belle Isle, which they were accustomed to visit for a certain wood for 
their harpoon shafts. 


After the first tragic attempt of the Moravians at converting 
the Eskimo, which ended in the massacre of their missionaries, 
a successful station was established at Nain in 1771. In 1776 
another mission was started at Okkak, 130 miles north of Nain, 
and in 1782, the mission at Hopedale, about the same distance 
south of Nain, and near the site of the old tragedy. 

At the end of the eighteenth century, the Eskimo living at 
the Moravian Mission settlements were as follows (probably 
only a small part of the entire population of the coast, as the 
Moravians estimated the total population of the coast at 
3,000* when they began operations in 1763). 

Nain 63 persons 30 professing Christianity 

Hopedale 51 33 

Okkak 48 22 

Fifty years after the settlement, the number had increased 

Nain 168 persons 

Hopedale 149 " 

Okkak 394 

The gradual increase and ingathering of the Eskimo in the 
vicinity of the Moravian stations was doubtless in a large measure 
due to the wisdom of the Brethren in selecting good hunting 
sites for their establishments. 

In 1830 a settlement was begun at Hebron, north of 
Okkak, which in six years had attracted a population of 148. 

In 1840 the resident population of all stations was as follows: 

Nain 298 persons 

Hopedale 205 

Okkak 352 

Hebron.. 179 " 


The Eskimo at this time were reported to have mostly 
deserted the coast north of Hebron and gone to Ungava, so this 

1 The statistics which follow are taken from the Mission reports. 


represents the approximate Eskimo population of the northern 
Labrador coast in 1830. 

In 1842 a malignant influenza resulted in the death of many 
Eskimo at the mission stations. Added to this infliction, seals 
were scarce, and there was danger of starvation. But the 
hardy converts survived, and by 1850 had increased to 1,297, 
as follows : 

Nain 314 persons 

Hopedale 229 " 

Okkak 408 a 

Hebron 346 

Famine and disease again visited the settlements in 1855; 
the seal hunt failed and at Hebron 59 people died. But, as 
usual, dearth was followed by an abundant season in which 
former troubles were forgotten. 

In 1857, at the invitation of Mr. Smith (the late Lord 
Strathcona), one of the Brethren journeyed to North West river, 
at the head of Hamilton inlet, to discuss the advisability of estab- 
lishing a station among the Eskimo of that district. When it 
was found that there were only ten Eskimo families still surviving 
in that section, the Mission decided that it would not pay to 
take up work among them. (Descendants of these families are 
found at the present day at a little native settlement near 
Rigolet called Karawalla, and number about 35 souls.) 

In 1857 the dogs at the Mission stations were attacked by a 
mysterious disease of the Arctic peculiar to canines, and many of 
them perished. Wild game was also infected, and caribou, 
foxes, wolves, and other animals died in large numbers. Conse- 
quently, due to the diminishing of food, the next census (1860) 
of the Eskimo shows a slight decrease: 

Nain 277 persons 

Hopedale 241 

Okkak 314 

Hebron 206 " 

In 1865 a station was established at Zoar, about halfway 
between Nain and Hopedale, and in 1871 another northern 
station at Ramah, north of Hebron. 


In 1876 the Eskimo were visited by another scourge, whoop- 
ing-cough. Over 100 died out of a total population of 1,200. 
In 1880 the population of the stations, old and new, stood as 
follows : 

Nain 282 persons 

Hopedale 315 

Okkak 329 

Hebron 202 

Ramah 44 " 

Zoar 130 

The lack of material increase at the old stations, shown in 
this table, was doubtless due to the withdrawal of certain Eskimo 
to the new intermediate stations, as well as the usual shifting of 
the Eskimo population. The figures for the next decade (1890) 
are about the same, with a decrease at Nain and Zoar, and a 
slight increase at the other stations : 

Nain 263 persons 

Hopedale 331 " 

Okkak 350 

Ramah 59 

Zoar 89 " 

In 1890 Zoar and Ramah were abandoned, and the old 
stations covered the original field. New stations were started 
at the extreme south and north of the Eskimo district at Mak- 
kovik (1896) and Killinek, Cape Chidley (1904), which took in 
any stragglers on the border of Moravian territory, and gave the 
Brethern the complete control of the Eskimo on the Atlantic 
coast of Labrador. 1 

The Moravians early adopted the policy of retaining in their 
service the brightest of their converts as missionary helpers, and 
as teachers in the schools which they maintain for the benefit 
of the Eskimo children. According to the last available report 
(September, 1913) there are forty-six such native assistants, 

1 Previous to the establishment of the Moravian station at Cape Chidley, missionary 
work had been done there by the Reverend Stewart of the Church of England. Moravian 
missionaries had also penetrated into Ungava bay. An agreement was reached whereby the 
right of the Moravians to the Atlantic seaboard was acknowledged and that of the Church 
of England to Ungava. 


twenty-one male and twenty-five female, at the various stations. 
The baptized membership of the entire district, which includes 
practically all the Eskimo, was as follows, at the close of 1912: 

Total membership 1,216; including those under discipline 

For the Ungava district and the east coast of Hudson bay, 
we have no such definite figures. The best obtainable are those 
published in the Geological Survey Annual Report, 1895, vol. 
VIII, page 42L, which were supplied by Mr. Gray, for ten years 
a clerk at Fort Chimo. He reckons the Eskimo by families, as 
follows : 

From Cape Chidley to Hopes Advance 51 families 

About Hopes Advance 30 " 

From Stupart bay to Cape Wolstenholrne 80 " 

From Cape Wolstenholme to Great Whale river 80 " 

241 families 

Taking five persons to a family (a high average for the 
Eskimo), the total population from Cape Chidley to Great 
Whale river would be 1,205 persons, and the total: 

Cape Chidley to Great Whale river 1,205 persons 

Mission Eskimo 1,250 * 

Kara walla (Hamilton inlet) Eskimo 35 " 

Scattered survivors south of Hamilton inlet . , 5 " 


or, in round numbers, a total of 2,500 Eskimo for the entire 
Labrador peninsula. 

These figures look rather small after reading of the "hun- 
dreds" of Eskimo met by early explorers and the 30,000 estimated 
at the beginning of the eighteenth century, but are probably a 
good criterion of past as well as present conditions, and the early 
estimate of the Moravians of 3,000 for the Eskimo of the Labrador 
coast can not be far wrong. 


It is extremely unlikely that the Eskimo ever had tribal 
names in the strict sense in which they are used by the Indians, 
but they have certain place-names by which they designate the 


territory or locality from which a stranger comes. This is 
shown in the use of suffixes appended to the same, as -miut, the 
people of such and such a place. The Alaskan Eskimo, according 
to Nelson, have designations for regular tribal divisions, but the 
only reference which the Labrador Eskimo make in speaking 
of their neighbours appears to be that they stand in a certain 
direction in relation to them. This distinction, used by the 
Fort Chimo Eskimo of Ungava bay, has been applied by Turner 
to the entire peninsula, and I have adopted his general divisions, 
as they appear to hold good throughout the northern area, with 
the reservation mentioned above. 

They are as follows: 

The Su'hi'nimiut "those who dwell at or in the sun," 
i.e., the dwellers to the east, the Eskimo on the Atlantic coast 
and on the Ungava side as far south as Leaf river. 

The Ta'ha"Ymiut "those who dwell in the shade," i.e., the 
dwellers to the west, the Eskimo from Leaf river to Cape Wolsten- 
holme. This division includes the "Northerners" of Turner, 
the Eskimo from Hopes Advance. 

The Iti'vimiut, "the dwellers on the other side," i.e., the 
Eskimo on the other side of the coast, the east coast of Hudson 

To this category might be added another division. 

The Ki'yikta"Ymiut, or "island people," the Eskimo 
inhabiting the islands off the east coast of Hudson bay, now 
extinct, except on the Belcher islands. 

The following lesser divisions or place-names for the Eskimo 
from Cape Chidley west were obtained from one informant: 

Killi'nunmiut, "land's end people," Cape Chidley. 

Kanilualukcu"amiut, "long, narrow bay people," George 

Kokso"akmiut, "big river people," Koksoak (Fort 

Una"va'miut, "farthest northerners," Hopes Advance. 

Nuvu'gmiut, "people at the point," Cape Wolstenholme. 

Iti'vimiut, "people across the point of land," east coast 
of Hudson bay. 


From another informant the place-names of the Eskimo 
from Cape Chidley south were obtained, completing the list: 

Killi'nurjmiut, "land's end people," Cape Chidley. 

Kom'hicu'amiut, Okkak. 

Nirne"r)irmiut, Nain. 

A"vitirmiut, Hopedale. 

Aivitu"miut, "whaling-place people," Rigolet. 

Netce"tirmiut, "sealing-place people," Cartwright (Sand- 
wich bay). 

Pirtla"va-miut, Battle harbour. 


The coastal habitation of the Labrador Eskimo is broken only 
at Davis inlet, on the Atlantic coast, v/here the Eastern Naskapi 
come out yearly to the Hudson's Bay Company post to trade. 
The factor here informed me that the trade was almost entirely 
Indian. Parallel cases might be cited in Alaska, where the 
Copper River Indians (Atnah Dene) have broken through the 
Eskimo boundary at Cooks inlet, and the break between the 
Eskimo on the east and west sides of Hudson bay, where the 
Cree occupy the territory at the bottom of the bay. 

The vast wilderness forming the "interior country" of the 
Labrador peninsula is inhabited by the Naskapi and Montagnais 
Indians. The Naskapi are found north and the Montagnais 
south of the height of land. Low, in his admirable report of 
the Labrador interior in the Geological Survey Annual Report, 
1895, pages 44-45L, gives the following definite boundaries for 
the Indians and Eskimo: 

"The Montagnais inhabit the country extending south of 
a line drawn westward from Hamilton inlet, to the headwaters 
of the St. Maurice river. The Nauscaupees inhabit the interior 
country north of this line, or from the bottom of James bay 
eastward to Hamilton inlet. The northern limit of their ter- 
ritory [the Naskapi's] is marked by the Koksoak river, from 
its mouth to the Stillwater branch, and by this stream west- 
ward to its head in the neighbourhood of Clearwater lake, 
and thence westward to Richmond gulf on Hudson bay (see 
map). This line divides the Indian territory from that 


of the Eskimo, and the boundary is well observed, the latter 
keeping far to the north of it, when hunting deer inland, 
and the Indian rarely crossing it from the southward." 


The Eskimo do not have any strict divisions of hunting 
territory, such as characterize their near Indian neighbours, 
the Micmacs and Montagnais. Most of the hunting is done on 
the sea, which is free to every one. The same condition applies 
to the vast interior, where the Eskimo hunt for deer in the autumn 
and spring. 

The idea of restricting the pursuit of game is repugnant to 
the Eskimo, who hold that food belongs to everyone. This 
does not preclude them from having intricate laws for the division 
of game, when hunting in parties. 

Under ordinary conditions, a family may occupy a fishing 
station in summer year after year undisputed, but it does not 
give them any special right to it. Anyone else is free to come 
and enjoy its benefits, and, according to Eskimo ethics, they 
would move away before they would start a dispute about it. 
Quite often a deserving but poor young hunter is invited by a more 
fortunate family to share their camping ground, and is thus 
enabled to get a start in life. 

A factor of a Hudson's Bay Company post in Eskimo 
country told me about a Micmac Indian who moved into his 
district, and attempted to establish the hunting divisions to 
which he was accustomed. The idea was so repugnant to the 
Eskimo that they drove him out. 


The climate of Labrador is rigorous, particularly in the 
northern section, owing to the immense fields of ice brought down 
from the north by the cold Labrador current. Not only do the 
inhabitants have their own bay and river ice to contend with, 
but the ice coming out of Ungava bay and Hudson strait; and 
particularly the Arctic pack sweeping down yearly from the north- 
ern archipelago through Fox channel. The latter appears 


early in the season, sometimes in September, and stays until 
July, or, in extreme seasons, until August. The result of this 
superabundance of cold is to blight any appearance of life on 
the barren coast-line, and its stretch of grey rocks covered with 
moss and lichens is impressive but extremely depressing. In 
the sheltered inlets, as at Davis inlet, Hamilton inlet, and 
Sandwich bay, there is a growth of small timber; game and 
berries abound, and life is more endurable. The "liveyers." 
or permanent white settlers on the Labrador coast, who fish 
on the coast in summer, make their winter homes here. Pota- 
toes and garden truck are raised in sheltered spots with some 

The bays in the northern portion, Saglek, Nachvak, etc., 
freeze over in the middle or end of December. Navigation 
closes here the first of November, and the extensive transient 
population of Newfoundland fishermen, estimated at 15,000, 
is off the northern coast by this time. In this section flurries 
of snow are not unusual at any time of the year. In the vicinity 
of Hudson strait and Ungava bay, the higher hills retain snow 
until the last of August, and are covered again by the middle 
of September. This condition is probably due to the immense 
amount of moisture in the atmosphere and the presence of ice- 
bergs at all times of the year, causing variations in temperature. 

Ice forms in the various bays to a depth of from 20 to 40 
feet. The lowest recorded temperature is 55 degrees below 
zero, although the actual range is probably greater. The tem- 
perature rarely rises above 80 degrees, even during the brief 
three months summer. In the northern section, this season is 
shortened to two months, counting by the disappearance of the 
snow and ice, and winter is hardly over before it begins again. 


The dependence of hunting on ice conditions is well known 
in the north, particularly in the Eskimo world. The ice brings 
the winter store of seal and bear, and the break-up in the spring 
is followed by the walrus and whale. The absence of ice on their 
coastal settlements, or fixed ice remaining without a break, 
would mean starvation to the Eskimo. Consequently they 


locate their villages where there is "free" ice, i.e., where the ice 
is kept moving by ocean currents during the winter, and there 
are open spots and blow-holes for seal and walrus. There is 
only a month or so in mid-winter when the ice is stationary. 
In the spring, when it breaks up and is carried north, there appears 
to be an acceleration of the current, and in the autumn its coming 
is usually preceded by a high tide. Cases are recorded in the 
extreme north where the ice has remained fixed for two seasons, 
but these are rare. 

The generic word for ice is ci'ku- (Baffin island, North 
Alaska siku' ; Yukon tci'ku} 1 . When the ice begins to form in the 
inlets and bays, it is known as "young ice," ci'kwaq. When it 
is strong enough to travel on, it is called ci'kwu'liaq. The winter 
"pack" ice, broken and shifting, is termed tu"vaq. The heavier 
glacial ice, which comes down from the Arctic, is known as 
ku-'vat. The "shore" ice, or ice which adheres to the land, and 
is often seen in spring after the ocean is clear of pack ice, is called 
qai'naq. The "sea edge," where the ice meets the open water, 
which is a favourite hunting ground at certain seasons, is named 
se'n-n-a', literally "edge." 

The provenience of the ice which sweeps down the Labrador 
coast can usually be determined by its appearance. The ice 
which comes out of Ungava bay is found in long flat "pans"; 
the Arctic ice which comes down through Fox channel and 
Hudson strait is heavy and glacial. It appears that here, as in 
Alaska, while ice forms in the bays, the coast is blocked, rather 
than frozen over, by the northern ice-drift. Even in summer 
there is a constant procession of stately icebergs (pixalwyaq) 
down the coast. 


Snow enters nearly as much into the Eskimo economy as 
ice, and also has many names according to its condition and 

The general word for snow, lying on the ground, is a" pat 
(a"pu'n in Alaska). Falling snow is known as qp"n'n'ik (as in 
qonikpaq, it falls or is snowing). Snow blocks for building snow- 

1 Dr. Boas informs me that the Eskimo s is never pure, which may account for the apparent 
variation in dialect. 


houses are made from "living" snow (caftu'ila'ktaq) , i.e., snow 
which will adhere when the blocks are placed together, such as is 
found in a newly-made drift which has just begun to harden. 
The blocks themselves are termed carilu'ktaq, from caruya 
"cutting out." The key piece which fits in the roof is the 


The Labrador Eskimo, like their congeners in other sections, 
divide the year into seasons corresponding to the appearance of 
game or other natural conditions. These divisions do not cor- 
respond exactly with our monthly divisions, but are near enough 
for purposes of comparison. There is no attempt to equalize 
the lunar with the sidereal year, and the divisions, as their names 
indicate, are governed by the conditions of climate and the 
appearance of game. 

On the east (Atlantic) Labrador coast, the following months 
are named : 

si"ka-lu-t, "ice-forming month," December. 

neldkai'tu-k, "coldest month for frost," January. 

kcrblu-t, "ground cracked by frost," February. 

netcd'lu-t, "the month of the young Jar seal (ne'tceq)," March. 

teYe'l-u-lu"t, "the month of the young Bearded seal (teYel'ut)," 

no'Yalu-t, "month of fawning" (noyoq, "fawn"), May. 

kuciYi'alu-t, "the month of the young Ranger seal (kuciYiuk- 
ciuk), June. 

According to my informant, the summer months were 
bunched into one season. He said there were many kinds of 
game then, and no necessity for distinguishing the season of any 
particular one. 

From Ungava the following divisions, which distinguish the 
summer months, were obtained. 

The months were said to be the same as given above until 
the month of June. (The young of the Ranger or Freshwater 
seal, kuciYiu'ciuk, from which the month of June takes its name 
on the east coast, is not found in Ungava.) Beginning, then, 
with June, we have. 


mu'n-ilu-t, "egg-month" (from mu'n-ik "egg"), June. 

kituYi'alu-t, "mosquito-month" (from kituyi'oq "mosquito"), 

pu'rja"lu-t, "berry-month" (from pu'naq "berry," puya 
Lab.), August. 

qowli'lu-t, "fading-month" (from qonoli't "fade"), i.e., 
the month when the leaves and mosses fade in colour, September. 

sikuarlu't, "the month when ice forms around the shore" 
(from sikua'q "thin ice, young ice"). 

nu-nali'alu't, "inland month," i.e., the month that they go 
into the interior for deer (from nunali'aq "the interior country"). 


The Labrador Eskimo do not note the appearance of the 
stars for any yearly calculations of time, but use them as a guide 
in travelling, and recognize several of the larger constellations 
by name. The North Star is known as ni*ki'teu"ituk, "the star 
that moves not"; the Big Dipper (Ursa Major) appears to them 
as a reindeer, and is called the Reindeer Star, tu-ktu'Yu'k; the 
Little Dipper (Ursa Minor) is named from its shape, the Short 
Ribs, sage't-cet; the Morning Star is qaucut, from qau', forehead, 
i.e., the front or forerunner of day; the Evening Star is ifna-cu-t, 
from u-nu"ak, night, i.e., the forerunner of night. Orion is 
known as ka'muti'qdjuaq, the sledge ( ?) . 


Under the hard conditions of his environment provision for 
food becomes one of the most important questions affecting the 
Eskimo. But nature, which has been so niggardly in assigning 
him to a cheerless climate, appears to have partly made up for 
it in supplying a fairly abundant supply of game, both on sea 
and land, and, as a relish, a quantity of wild herbs and berries. 
The abundant floral life which springs out of the earth in Arctic 
regions as soon as the snow is gone is really amazing, and lends, 
for a brief period, a cheerful aspect to the otherwise dreary 

The chief food of the Eskimo in Labrador, as elsewhere, is 
the common seal (ne'tceq), Pagomys foetidus. It is found near 


the shore at all seasons of the year; in winter at the blow holes 
in the smooth ice and in summer in the bays and fiords. The Big, 
or Bearded seal (u'djuk), Pagomys barbatus, and the Ranger or 
Freshwater seal (kas-i'yiak )are found farther out on the ice-edge 
(se'n'a) where the shore or bay ice meets the ever-shifting 
winter pack. As they are much larger than the common seal, 
and one constitutes a big feed for one family, the Eskimo usually 
divide them with their fellow-villagers. 


The Eskimo of Labrador distinguish the following varieties 
of -seal: 

Kas-i'fiak (Callecephalus vitulunus, Linn.), commonly called 
the Ranger or Freshwater seal. This variety is much sought 
after by the Eskimo on account of its beautiful, spotted skin. 
The hide is dressed with the hair on, and used chiefly for orna- 
mental purposes, as in fancy bags and gloves, or trimmings to 
boot-leg tops, and in the garments of the women. The Ranger is 
the only seal known to inhabit fresh water. It is found at the 
mouths of rivers, along the coasts, in the inlets and bays, and 
is also said to inhabit the interior lakes of Labrador and Baffin 

The young are born in the month of June, kuci'gi'alut, 
which takes its name from the young Ranger, kuci'giukciuk. 

Ne'tceq (Pagomys foetidus Fab.), commonly called the Jar 
seal. This is the most common seal on the coast. Its meat is a 
staple article of food, and its hide forms the ordinary material 
for clothing. The skin is also used for bags (po'ksrut) and the 
tent (tu"pik). The dressed skin with the hair removed is used 
for boot legs, and when the larger and heavier skins of the Harp 
or Bearded seal cannot be obtained, it is used for the kayak 

The young are born in the month of March, ne'tcelu't, 
to which they give its name. The mother gives birth, to them 
in an excavation which she has scraped out of a snow 
bank conveniently near an air hole in the ice. The Eskimo, 
at this season of the year, keep a sharp lookout for these little 
snow hummocks, in which they are assisted by the keen scent 


of their dogs. When the hiding place is found, the top is broken 
in, and the seal and her young despatched. 

When the young Jar seal are born, they are covered with a 
soft, beautiful, white fur, 1 which remains unchanged until they 
are three months old. 

U"djuk (Phoca barbata) , commonly known as the Bearded or 
Big seal. This very useful variety of seal is common all along 
the Labrador coast, especially at Cape Chidley. It ranks in 
size next to the walrus. Its tough hide is much prized for boot- 
soles, heavy traces, boat lines, and dog harnesses; and is also 
used for umiak coverings when walrus skins are scarce. The 
flesh is coarser than that of the smaller varieties, but less fishy. 

The young are brought forth in April, teye'l'U'i'lit, the month 
of the young Bearded seal, teyel'U't. 

Hiyolik (Phoca groenlandica) , commonly called the Harp 
or Saddleback seal. This is a deep water seal, not common 
in summer along the Labrador coast. In early spring it is found 
in immense numbers on the ice packs off the coast, where it is 
taken in large lots by the Newfoundland sealers. The skins 
are manufactured into boots and a variety of leather goods. 
The natives use the hides occasionally for boot soles (when 
Big seal hides are unobtainable), and also for tenting and kayak 

The young are born in May on the floating pack. 

Netci'vuk 2 (Cysterphera cristata), commonly known as the 
Hood or Bladder-nose seal. This is the next largest variety to 
the Bearded seal. It is not found on the west coast of Labrador, 
and is a native of the Greenland coast. The seals arrive on the 
ice off the east Labrador coast in the vicinity of Nain about 
the second week in May and are poor from their journey. They 
then follow the coast north to Cape Chidley and strike back to 
Greenland. Very few are found in Hudson strait, and none in 
Hudson bay. 

They produce their young about two weeks later than the 
Harp seal (last of May), and are usually found farther out on 
the ice than the Harp. Neither of these two varieties stays 

1 In this condition they are known to the Newfoundland sealers as "whitecoats." 
J Literally, a big* overgrown Jar seal, ne'tceq. 


in the Labrador waters the year round, like the Jar and Bearded 
seal and Ranger. The name Bladder-nose is derived from a 
protuberance on the nose of the male, which becomes inflated 
when it is angry or excited. 

The walrus (Phoca rosmorus, Linn), (ai'<fnk) is seldom seen 
along the Atlantic coast 1 although it formerly ranged as far 
south as the St. Lawrence. Off the northeast coast of Labrador 
and southern Baffin island, and the western end of Hudson strait, 
the walrus is still plentiful. 

The white whale (killilu-"{uk) forms an important part of 
the food supply in Ungava bay and on the east coast of Hudson 
bay. It is taken at the Hudson's Bay Company posts at Fort 
Chimo and Great Whale river, and the hides and oil exported 
as a regular industry. Nets are placed across the entrance of 
the large rivers at high tide, and the animals trapped when the 
tide goes out. Both Eskimo and Indians are employed in this 


As a complement to the seal, the "reindeer" or barren- 
ground caribou forms the other great food staple of the Eskimo. 
The caribou are taken on the Atlantic coast of Labrador and at 
the mouth of the Koksoak river in Ungava bay, when they come 
out in the spring migration to escape the pest of mosquitoes 
in the interior. Large numbers of the migrating herds are still 
killed at Fort Chimo, Ungava, and at Nachvak, Saglek, and 
Davis inlets, Nain, and a few at the head of Hamilton inlet 
and Sandwich bay on the Labrador coast. The interior is said 
to contain three immense herds, 2 two of which are hunted 
mainly by the Eskimo. One spends the summer between 
Nachvak and Nain; and the other crosses the Koksoak near 
Fort Chimo to the west side of Ungava bay.* 

1 The author encountered a large herd of walrus in heavy ice off Davis inlet during this 
trip. As the season was a particularly late one and the ice unusually abundant, they may 
hare drifted south with the pack. There used to be a large herd which was hunted at Nachrak 

* See Report on Labrador, A. P. Low. Geological Survey, Annual Report, 1895, vol. VIII, 
p. 319. 

1 For a very interesting account of the annual hunt at Fort Chimo, see Turner's account 
la Ethnology a) the Ungaio district, llth Rep. Bureau of Am. Ethnology. 


In northern Labrador, the Eskimo used to construct caches 
for such meat as was not immediately consumed. These were 
found wherever an overhanging cliff or large boulder could be 
utilized for a back and roof. The sides were built up of large 
stones, with a space left within sufficient for a man to move 
around in. Entrance was through the top. The meat was 
dried in the spring, and frozen in the autumn, and is said to have 
kept well, 1 preserving its proper flavour. The Eskimo ate the 
frozen meat raw, but soaked and boiled the dried meat. 

Turner states that he has seen the Eskimo "strip and de- 
vour the back, fat, and flesh from the body of the deer while 
the fibres were yet quivering." I have seen them swarm over 
a freshly killed whale with their knives in their hands, for a 
precious chunk of black-skin and blubber. But I do not think 
that the Eskimo habitually eat meat raw, unless it is some 
delicate portion, which is then usually eaten in a frozen state. 
Under ordinary conditions the meat is boiled before it is eaten. 
The blood (auq) of the seal or deer makes a strong and nourish- 
ing soup, of which all the Eskimo, especially the children, are 
very fond. 2 


In spring, countless eggs (mu'n-ik) are gathered from the 
waterfowls breeding along the rocky islands and inlets of the 
coast. The surplus is laid aside until they have a very "gamey" 
flavour, when they figure in the winter feasts as a special delicacy. 
Small birds, particularly the little sea-pigeon (pitchulu'x) and 
"Tinker" duck are secured in summer with the bird dart or net 
and added to the winter store. 

1 The Moravians early discovered a way of pickling the deer meat, and keeping it indefi- 
nitely. Those who have sampled it say it is excellent. 

1 Dr. Kane, in his Arctic explorations, p. 15, strongly recommend! raw meat, as it is eaten 
by the Eskimo. He says that as a powerful and condensed heat-making food it has no equal. 
The Greenland Eskimo that he met used to feed up on raw meat for sereral days before under- 
taking a long journey. He got so that he liked it himself, and his system demanded it. 

Dr. Kane also lays stress on the anti-scorbutic ralue of raw meat. No one erer heard 
of an Eskimo having the scurvy, although they have little or no vegetable food. 

The Eskimo taste for fat and blubber also has a direct relation to their bodily needs, and 
is often acquired by Arctic travellers. The late Professor Frank Russel in his Explorations 
in the far north declares that while In the Mackenzie country he would not have exchanged 
a little square of fat for the finest plum pudding that was ever made. 


Green herbs and saxifrage are gathered by the women 
when they first appear 1 and used as greens with the bowl of meat. 
In times of starvation even moss is utilized. Only certain kinds 
are used, such as the varieties of caribou moss (nexa'yasuk) 
which contain enough nourishment to sustain life. 

The women also hunt for fleshy roots and tubers which they 
dig up with pointed sticks. There is a little tuber, commonly 
called the "Eskimo potato," which I believe is a variety of the 
red lily, much sought after by the Alaskan Eskimo women. 
These are strung on sinew lines and hung up in the sun to dry. 
They are about as large as walnuts and have about the same 
taste as new potatoes. 

Fish are very abundant along the Labrador coast, and are 
taken by the Eskimo in large quantities. Since the advent 
of the Moravians, improved methods of curing have been intro- 
duced, which have resulted in the "Mission" fish bringing a 
higher price in the market than that of the white fishermen. 2 
Cod, salmon, whitefish, capelin, and sea trout are plentiful 
on the Atlantic coast. In Ungava bay some salmon are taken. 3 


The abundance of various kinds of berries compensates 
for the absence of large fruit. Nearly twenty varieties of edible 
berries are distinguished and named by the natives. 

> In Alaska, when the disappearing snow has laid bare the first green grasses and herbs 
on the hillslopes, the Eskimo women go out and each gathers a handful of the new shoots, 
which are brought in and ceremonially burnt over a small fire outside the iglu. They say 
that this ensures the growth for the summer. 

1 The native method of curing fish differs slightly from that of the whites. The backbone 
and ribs are completely removed by two cuts of the ulu instead of the method employed by the 
fishermen, consisting of one cut, which removes half the bone. The Eskimo then hang the fish 
up on notched sticks to dry. The back is dried first to give stiffness and retain the shape 
In the spread-out sides, which the presence of the rib bone gives in the civilized method. The 
advantage of the native method is that it gives a boneless fish. After the back is well stiffened 
the front is dried. Fish cured this way will keep indefinitely. 

The present method, introduced by the Moravians, is similar to those used in the old 
country, in Scandinavia and Germany. More attention is paid to the cure and to cleanliness, 
which perhaps also accounts for the higher price. 

' The Ungava salmon are classed scientifically aa the Arctic salmon; by the fishermen 
they are believed to be simply a part of the Labrador school. They arrive two months after 
the main Labrador school and are said to be larger and finer fish. 


Of the bush berries there are : 

Blueberry (kiyu'tayi'^nuk), Vaccinium Pennsylvanium 
Indian pear (aqpiwyuk), Amelanchier Canadensis. 
Dewberry (po'ynuk), Rubus articus. 
Dogberry (kimvnau'yuk), Ribes Cynosbati. 
Squashberry (co^naxa'tik}, Viburnum pauciflorum. 
Wild cherry, Prunus pennsylvanica. 

The creeper and plant varieties are legion : 

Shrub blueberry (Duckberry), Vaccinium uliginosum. 
Ground blueberry (siyatuk), Vaccinium caespitosum. 
Cracker berry or froth-berry (qa'qtaliK). 
Baked-apple (a'kpik), Rubus Chaemomous. 
Marsh-berry (turjuyu'paluk). 
Maidenhair-berry (mama'qtu'lik}. 
Wild strawberry (a-riti'rjatuk) Fragaria virginiana. 
Cranberry (kimimino'k), Vaccinium vitis-Idaea. 
Crowberry, Empetrum nigrum. 
Foxberry (porjno'yuk). 
Partridgeberry (kiminu'k). 
Blackberry (paugnatwi'nuk}. 

A favourite dish of the Labrador Eskimo is the eu'valik, 
a combination of salmon spawn and blueberries and seal fat. 
The cranberry and blueberry are staple foods of the natives. 
The crowberry, which is not so well flavoured, is eaten when 
blueberries are scarce. The natives also distinguish several 
varieties of blueberries and blackberries as to colour and shape, 
and name a white blueberry and blackberry besides those given 
above, also a pear-shaped blueberry. These distinctions may 
be due only to seasonal changes, but go to show what sharp 
observers of natural phenomena the Eskimo are. The salmon- 
berry, common in Alaska, appears to be identified here with the 

Chief among the berries is the baked-apple (a'kpik), also 
called the cloudberry. Its four-petalled white blossoms are 
seen covering the hillsides and swamps almost as soon as the 
snow is gone, By the last of August the berry is formed. It is 
often eaten earlier, while green, by the native children, just 
as white children love to devour green apples. The cranberry 
is found principally about Hamilton river, but grows as far 


north as the Koksoak. It is an important article of food as it 
has good preservative qualities. It also might be called medicinal 
in that its acid juices counteract to a large extent the exclusive 
meat diet of the Eskimo. It is gathered just before the ground 
is covered with snow, as it is improved by frost, and again in the 
spring, just after the disappearance of the snow, when it is 
said to be most perfect. 

The varieties of blueberry are widespread. The shrub 
variety is found in northern Labrador on the rivers and barrens 
and is a firmer fruit and more acid to the taste than its southern 
relative, the bush variety, found throughout southern Labrador 
as far north as Nain. An intermediate variety, the ground 
blueberry, is found along the Koksoak. The dewberry (Rubus 
articus) is found in large quantities on the islands off the east 
coast of Hudson bay, also in northern Labrador along the rivers. 
A smaller species, the eyeberry, Rubus triflorus, is found on 
Hamilton river. 

The wild-strawberry (Fragaria virginiana), which has a 
reddish blossom distinguishing it from the white blossom of the 
baked-apple, is abundant in Hamilton inlet and on the east 
coast of Hudson bay. The Indian pear is found in two varieties 
in the interior and on Hamilton inlet and Sandwich bay. The 
crowberry (Empetrum nigrum) is common throughout the rocky 
coast and inlets. Altogether, Labrador is perhaps better 
supplied with berries than any other section of sub-arctic country 
which the Eskimo inhabit. 


During my voyage around the Labrador peninsula I took 
pains to make a collection of plants, and particularly to inquire 
of the natives if any were put to a medicinal use. I was agree- 
ably surprised to find that quite a few were used for this purpose, 
and among them I recognized some varieties also employed 
by the natives of Alaska. Whether the use of such plants was 
originally derived from the Indians or whites, I cannot say, 
but it is true that the Eskimo recognize the use of several com- 
mon plants for poultices and teas, the efficacy of which I can 
testify from personal experience. 


The following are the plants so used: 

House leek (t l dlu"inuk] . The tea from its steeped leaves is 
said to be a perfect cure for scurvy. The bruised 
leaves are good for sore hands. 

Crystal tea (Ledum latifolium) . An infusion of the leaves 
is excellent for reducing the temperature and cool- 
ing the blood in fevers. Also used for spring dis- 
orders and scrofula. 

Indian tea (Ledum palustre). Makes a good poultice for 

Tansy. Makes an effective tea for colds. 

Kelp (qi'xuaq). Two varieties, one said to be injurious, 

and the other an antidote for skin diseases. 
Dandelion (wi'su"ktuk, "yellow flower"). Greens used to 

counteract meat diet. 

Foxberry (poyno'yuk, Lab.; pognaxo'tik, Ungava), Cobbler- 
blossom. Down used on wounds and sores (?). 
Leaves furnish a dye for mats. 

There are also several edible plants which I was unable 
to identify. The sea- weed, iqlu'yuk, is sometimes used as a 
food or medicine, and the species of reindeer-moss known as 

The Mission Eskimo, according to Dr. Hutton, 1 have several 
native medicines besides those already mentioned. They stew 
the twigs of rosemary, and make a sort of tea, which produces a 
perspiration that is thought to be a panacea for any trouble. 
The brain of the codfish, cut up in little red cubes, is eaten as a 
general cure-all. The liver (tiyo) of the seal, eaten raw, is 
"very good for sick people." This is a general Eskimo remedy. 2 

1 Hutton, Among the Eskimos of Labrador, Philadelphia, 1912. 

1 A Siberian Eskimo once brought me the liver and kidneys of a polar bear. He explained 
that they were "good medicine" and very valuable for disorders of the stomach and liver. 



The accompanying illustrations (Plates I and XXVIII) 
show the winter costume of a woman from northern Labrador, 
which is quite similar to that of the Baffin Island Eskimo across 
Hudson strait. The deerskin dicky is known as the a-'xolik; 
it is double in the winter costume, consisting of the qo'lituk, 
or outside dicky, with the hair turned out, and the a"tige or 
inside dicky with the hair turned in. It is made with the 
conventional long tail behind and short flap in front, which char- 
acterizes the dress of the Baffin-islanders. It is trimmed on 
the edge of the flaps with white strips of reindeer, and barred 
on the arms with the same material in triple strips with a cross 
bar. The back of the immense hood is trimmed in the same 
fashion. The hood is not so pointed as that of the central 

The deerskin dicky is also found with a rounded bottom 
edge trimmed with strips of skin. I was informed that this was 
worn by the unmarried women. The men wear a plain dicky 
with a straight bottom, and a smaller hood. The type appears 
to be the same on the east coast of Labrador and in Ungava 
(Plate II A). In Baffin island and on the east coast of Hudson 
bay the front of the men's dicky is slit for about 5 inches. It 
appears inthe illustration of a sealskin costume from Cape Wols- 
tenholme (Plate II B). The trousers in this section are also fuller 
and banded horizontally with alternate light and dark bars of seal- 
skin (Plate III B). Here the costumes begin to approach the 
characteristics of those of the Eskimo on the west coast of 
Hudson bay. We find also on the east coast of Hudson bay 
the long skin combination legging and boot (Plate III A a), 
which is not found in Ungava and eastern Labrador. The cut 
and trimming of the children's dicky for boys, where the pattern 
of the dicky reaches its simplest form, are practically the same 

1 As explained in the introduction to this paper the word dicky, in common use among 
the white trappers and settlers of Labrador, is a corruption of the Eskimo word a"tige. The 
use is parallelled in Baffin island by the corruption of the Eskimo designation of the outer 
frock, qo'lttuv. In Alaska we find the whites using the Russianized Kamtschatkan word, 
parka, for the Eskimo a"tige. 


on both sides of Hudson strait, and are similar to the men's 
costume, but without the slit in (Plate II A) the front of the 

The modern dicky for both men and women is made in this 
utilitarian form. Duffle is the ordinary material (for illustration 
of modern duffle costume see Plate I A). Over the fur or duffle 
dicky a cotton slip (ci'l-apaq) is drawn. The slips used by the 
women have handsomely embroidered hoods (Plate I, B and C) 
and are trimmed with fur about the face. 

Sealskin dickys are not very often worn by the women. 
They are used by the men when stalking seals in the spring, 
together with sealskin trousers. It is said that the sealskin 
slips over the ice and snow easier than deerskin, and also makes 
the seal think that one of his own kin is approaching. In 
connexion with this spring hunting costume, a hareskin cap is 
worn (Plate IV c). In modern times a white cotton slip (ci'l-- 
apaq), turned inside out to hide the braid trimmings, is worn 
over the sealskin dicky. In Ungava a pad of polar bearskin, 
with a hole through which the thumb is thrust, is used to protect 
the elbow when crawling up on the seal. 


On the inside of the flap of the woman's duffle dicky of the 
east coast of Hudson bay and Ungava there is a little line of 
pewter ornaments which jingle as she walks. These are made 
of old spoons obtained from the Hudson's Bay Company, and 
termed pi'xo-tit. The spoons are melted and the fluid metal 
poured into a mould made of two slabs of steatite. There are 
several moulds in a row, so that several ornaments may be made 
at one operation. The old-time dickys of the men had a fringe 
of ivory ornaments around the bottom; these were made from 
walrus teeth. They were rounded in form, with little handles 
by means of which they were attached to the coat. The shaman 
had an additional string of ivory ornaments around his face. 

A beaded or embroidered band is worn on the woman's 
duffle dicky (Plate V d). Fringes of beads (Plate Va) are also 
worn across the breast. Beaded ear ornaments of a similar 


pattern are worn as a complement of the fringes (Plate V c). 
This form of bead ornamentation is pushed to an extreme in the 
elaborately decorated frocks of the Eskimo of the west coast of 
Hudson bay. 

A composite button with a reindeer skin centre and a fringe 
of beads was formerly used on the dickys of the southern Labra- 
dor Eskimo in the vicinity of Hamilton inlet and Sandwich bay 
(Plate Vb). 


The trousers of the Labrador Eskimo are made of sealskin, 
dogskin, or moleskin, according to locality and use. On the east 
coast of Labrador cloth trousers have largely superseded the old 
sealskin type (cila'qaqox). For the women short trousers made 
of moleskin, just coming to the top of the boots and prettily 
embroidered at the bottom, are still in use (Plate I A). With 
them are worn the white-topped boots and embroidered ci'l-apaq, 
as shown in the illustration. This makes a very attractive 
costume, but is mostly confined to dress occasions, sealskin 
trousers being used for ordinary wear (Plate I B). The seal- 
skin trousers for the men come in two lengths, a knee and an 
ankle length. Illustrations of patterns of each are found in 
the ensuing pages. The use of the long sealskin legging with 
conbination boot or shoe, on the east coast of Hudson bay, 
has been mentioned. The Labrador Eskimo do not use leggings 
like the Alaskan Eskimo. 

In Ungava bay, from Fort Chimo to Cape Wolstenholme, 
dogskin, which wears longer than sealskin or reindeer, is highly 
prized by the men as material for trousers. Like the polar 
bearskin trousers of other Eskimo tribes, the long dog-hair does 
not so soon become greasy from the blubber eaten. Dogskin is 
also used in this section for dickys for small boys. 

A kayaker's suit, consisting of a gutskin coat and trousers, 
was obtained from Cape Wolstenholme. The coat is made 
like the usual type, of seal gut sewn together in longitudinal 
strips, but is peculiar in having a dressed sealskin flap in front. 


through which the drawskin runs (Plate VI a). The gutskin 
trousers (Plate VI b) are not used by the western Eskimo. 


Reindeer socks, with the hair turned in, are worn in winter 
inside the boots. They are ankle-high and similar to those used 
by the Alaskan Eskimo. 


Except that the woman's boot has a slight fullness at the top 
and more ornamentation, there does not appear to be any 
particular difference between the boots of men and women in 
Labrador, such as obtains in other sections (Plate III A). One 
pair of women's boots secured from the east coast of Labrador, 
was tanned entirely white. In ancient days these were reserved 
for dress occasions at feasts and festivals, and nowadays are worn 
to communion services. Both men's and women's boots are the 
knee length. The hip-boot and the ankle-boot, used in Alaska, 
are not found in Labrador. Dressed sealskin of various kinds, 
for summer boots, and with the hair on for winter boots, is the 
common material. A complete description is given in the 
division on the making of clothing. Reindeer boots are found 
in northern Labrador, similar in type to those of the Central 
Eskimo. The Labrador boots are quite plain, and nowhere did 
I see either the ornate fur-appliqu tops found in Alaska or the 
attractive Ieather-appliqu6 work seen on Greenland specimens. 


The Labrador Eskimo make an ankle-high dressed sealskin 
shoe, slit down the front. It is the same size but different 
otherwise from the Alaskan ku'muk. I have hesitated to in- 
clude it in an account of Eskimo culture, because of its obvious 
pattern after the white man's shoe, but find it illustrated in 
Turner's account of the Ungava Eskimo. It appears to be an 
adaptation of native material to a white man's cut (Plate VII e). 
Another example of border influence is the moccasins which the 
Labrador Eskimo half-breeds make. They are a clumsy imita- 
tion of the Indian moccasin, with a higher back and cloth top 
(Plate VII f). 



Dressing Deerskins. 

The Labrador Eskimo also dress and smoke caribou skins 
after the Indian method. The following description, obtained 
from a half-breed woman, illustrates the method in use in 
Labrador and Ungava. 

For a scraper they use the lower leg-bone of the deer, culling 
the bone like a spoke-shave blade (a typical Indian implement) ; 
sometimes only the end is used (referring to the vertical scraper) . 
The skin is laid on a round stick which is stood against a tree or 
anything solid. The outside of the deerskin is scraped first 
(with the grain in deerskin, against the grain in sealskin), because 
in deerskin the "film" (inner membrane) is left on. After the 
hair is cleaned off, the skin is washed and hung in the air long 
enough to dry. Then a paste is made of a portion of the brains 
of the deer, marrow from the bones, and dry flour, and smeared 
all over the skin on the outside. This is allowed to dry until it is 
a little stiffened. Then the skin is pulled from hand to hand, by 
two or three persons, until it is quite dry. If not soft enough, 
another paste is applied, and it is pulled again. Sometimes five 
or six pastes are used for heavy skins. If a white skin is desired, 
it is hung up during extremely cold weather outside and "frost- 
dried." A coloured skin is smoked. 

Smoking Deerskin. 

In smoking caribou skin, the skin is sewn overedge length- 
ways, and a small opening left at the neck. (Nowadays a drill 
or canvas neck ia attached to the skin to keep it from being 
injured by the heat of the fire.) Wherever there is a slack place 
in the skin, a string is attached and it is hung from overhead. 
Sticks are placed crossways of the skin-bag formed by the sewn- 
up skin, in order to keep it open and allow the smoke to circulate. 
A thin skin can be smoked in three hours; a good "smoke" takes 
about five hours. Rotten wood placed in a pot or other receptacle 
makes the best fire for smoking. 


The skin should be rolled up tight after smoking and put 
away for two hours. It is then unrolled and hung up to dry by 
the fire. Great care must be taken that no parts of the skin 
touch during smoking, else a whitish spot is left which spoils its 
general appearance. 

Where the present Eskimo are able to obtain Indian dressed 
deerskins from the Hudson's Bay Company posts, they do little 
such work themselves ; where they are not so located, we find them 
imitating Indian methods, as described above. 


Boots (ka'mik). 

In making sealskin boots, the Labrador Eskimo use six 
instruments: (1), the mu'bcd(3ik, a stick flat on one side and round 
on the other, on which the skin is laid; (2), the u"lu', or woman's 
knife, which is used to scrape off the fat and membrane; (3), the 
acdmau'tuk, a flat board, on which the oval forms of the boot are 
cut out; (4) the ti'cdkut, or scraper, used on the leg portions to 
make them white by, scraping off the dark outer skin; (5) the 
kalutuk, or boot creaser, of ivory or iron, which is used to smooth 
down the gathers in the toe of the boot; and (6), the a'xkau'dlut, 
or boot stretcher, a form on which the newly made boot is placed. 
The last instrument is also used in reshaping wet boots or old 
boots which have run over on the edge. 

After selecting a sealskin, it is laid on the mu'bcdftik and 
cleaned of fat and "film" (inside skin) with the u"hr. The skin 
is then turned over, and the hair scraped off on the other side, 
always pushing the knife against the grain. It is then hung up 
to dry, or, if , white boots are desired, is rolled up damp and left 
for a few days, and then lashed in a frame and left out in cold 
weather to "frost-dry." The extreme cold turns the usually 
yellowish skin a beautiful white. 

When the skin is sufficiently dried, it is taken down, laid on 
the acdmau'tik, and the oval forms of the soles are cut out (see 
Figure 1, No. 4). The bottoms are soaked and the outside edge 
is pared off. The leg portions and the tongue or instep are next 
cut out. Sometimes the leg and instep are cut in one piece. 


This method is more common in Ungava than on the Labrador 
coast. If white boot tops are desired, the leg portions are 
further scraped with the ti"Cdkut until the dark outer membrane 
is removed. The tongue or instep is cut out and treated the 
same as the legs. It is stitched on to the notch cut in the boot 
leg (see Figure 1, No. 3). The combined leg and instep skin is 
now folded and the straight seam sewed, a single stitch for winter 
boots, but a double seam for waterproof boots (see Figure 1, No. 
2). It now remains to sew the uppers to the soles of the boot. 
The leg and instep piece is soaked on the under part to make it 
pliable and easier to sew. The sole piece is cut large to allow 
for the gathering at the heel and toe. An allowance of some 
4 inches is made in the length and 5 to 6 inches in the "round." 
In gathering the sole to the upper, the seam is started at the 
side where the sole and tongue of the boot come together. The 
sole is gathered in by taking three stitches in the place of one, 
one stitch in the bottom part, then one in the tongue, and then 
one in the bottom again; about an inch of "whip" stitching. 
Proceeding with the "gathers," take two stitches in the bottom, 
one up through and the second down through, and a third in the 
tongue. This stitch, the a"l'ox stitch, holds until the round of the 
boot is made to within an inch of the tongue again; then the 
"whip" stitch is used for about 3 inches around the heel, then 
the triple stitch again, allowing a longer stitch than at the front 
of the boot (see pattern of tongue and sole, Figure 1, Nos. 3 and 


The top portion (see Figure 1, No. 1) is a straight strip 
about 1 inch wide folded. The two ends are sewn together, 
then turned down over the boot, raw edge up, and sewn with 
an "overedge" stitch. In the space thus formed the drawstring 
is placed. 

The Labrador boot lacks the ankle straps of the Alaskan, 
but is reinforced at the back in the heel by several lines of stitch- 
ing. This answers the same purpose of bracing up the sides and 
of keeping the form of the boot. 

After the sewing is completed, the boot is shaped with the 
a'xkau'dlut. This is a straight stick about 3 feet long with a 
little rounded top levelled at each edge. It is put up the leg 


of the boot, and the foot is stretched and shaped. The boot is 
then hung up to dry. 

Figure 1. Pattern of waterproof skin boot. 
1. Top. 2. Leg. 3. Instep. 4. Sole. 

a. Single whip stitch. b. Gather "a-'l-ox" stitch. !' c. Sidgle sole seam. 

d. Outside instep seam (opposite inside seam). e. Straight leg seam. 
f. Double leg seam. g. Top overedge seam. h. Top end overedge seam. 


To smooth down the "gathers" in the sole seam, the kd'lutuk 
or boot creaser is used. The arm is placed in the boot leg and 
the hand brought against the gathers inside, which are smoothed 
down by outward pressure of the kd'lutuk. 

When making boots in a hurry on the trail, a double stitch, 
like overedging, is used instead of the triple stitch, or a false 
bottom is put on with a "whip" stitch. 

In making the long hip boots, the seam is behind in the leg 
of the boot instead of in front, to keep out the wet at the knee. 
Winter boots are made by the same process, except that the 
Harp seal skins are used for the sole. The Ranger seal is a 
common material in southern Labrador, and is much prized on 
account of its beautiful appearance, but it is said to be less warm 
than the common seal. For the soles of the boots, the hides of 
the Bearded seal (u~djuk) are preferred, on account of their 
thickness and wearing qualities. Harp seal skins are used when 
the Bearded seal cannot be obtained. 

The sinew used in sewing is from the back tendon of the 
deer. It forms a regular article of trade with the Hudson's Bay 
Company. The Eskimo of southern Labrador call it i'vilu. In 
default of sinew, they use the "wisen" 1 of the seal. This is 
called i'giak. It is not so strong as the sinew. 


An inside slipper, made of sealskin, reindeer, or duffle, is 
used inside the boot. The slipper is cut out in one piece (see 
Figure 2, No. 1); the sides and fronts are folded together and 
sewed (a), then the back strip and two portions left of the sides 
are brought together and stitched, forming the heel (c and b). 
Lastly, the bottom of the heel is sewed to the upper heel formed 
by the last operation. 

The "herringbone" stitch is used throughout. The edge 
of the top is left plain or overedged with worsted or fur. Occa- 

1 According to Dr. Hutton, a former Moravian missionary at Okkak, this substitute for 
sinew thread is cut from the tissue of the neck of the seal. After the tissue has been cut out, 
it is laid on the floor and split into thin strips, which are chewed and stretched into thread. 
This thread is said to be even stronger than catgut, or cobbler's thread, which It somewhat 
resembles in appearance. 


sionally we find slippers of fawnskin with the short curly hair 
lining the inside, as in Alaska. 

Figure 2. 1. Pattern of sealskin slipper for boot. 
a. Herringbone side seam. b. Herringbone heel seam, 

c. Herringbone bottom of heel seam. 

2. Men's tobacco bag. 
a. Continuous edge seam with beaded sinew. 


An ankle-high shoe of tanned sealskin is sometimes worn 
by the women and children in summer (Plate VII e). They 
differ from the ankle-boot or kumuk of the Alaskan Eskimo in 
having a slit in front and in being evidently modelled after the 
shoe of the white man. The shoe is composed of two pieces, a 
sole and an upper which opens in front. It has no tongue. The 
upper is held together by a drawstring or lacing. The sole is 
gathered to the upper all around with the a"l'ox stitch. 

A winter shoe, with narrow bands of sealskin across the sole, 
is used by some of the northern tribes (Plate VII b). The 
transverse pieces are to prevent slipping on the ice. A specimen 


in the Museum from the Central Eskimo exhibits the same 
device, but in this case the bands are of sinew. 

Waterproof Stitching. 

There are two ways of making a waterproof seam. In one, 
the seam is an overedge stitch and the second seam is brought 
over and stitched down. In the other, which is much the better for 
keeping out the water, the first seam is made underneath; then 
the overhead second seam is made. In every case the stitch 
must be doubled in the second seam to prevent leaking; in the 
second method mentioned the stitch is doubled in both seams. 


Figure 3. Pattern of sealskin mitten. 
1. Palm and thumb. 2. Body and thumb. 

a. Single thumb seam. b. Double thumb seam. c. Plain side seam, 
d. Overhand gather seam. e. Inside double seam. 


In making mittens, the palm and inside of the thumb are 
cut out first in one piece, and the back of the mitten and the 
outside of the thumb in another piece (see Figure 3). The 
sewing is done on the inside, so that the seams may not show 
when the mitten is finished and turned. 

In sewing, the thumb of the palm and the back piece are 
brought together and sewn with a single stitch from the inside 
(a and b) . The outside edge is then drawn over in a double seam. 
The sides are sewn together from the wrist around to the thumb 
with a plain stitch. Lastly, the outer edge of the back is brought 
over and drawn in slightly with an overhand stitch. 

In another pattern, used in deerskin mittens, the thumb is 
cut out separately and stitched into the aperture left in the 
mitten with a "herringbone" stitch. In this pattern (see 

Figure 4. Pattern of deerskin mitten. 
1. Body. 2. and 3. Thumb pieces. 

a. Herringbone top and side seam. b. Herringbone thumb seam. 
c. Herringbone bottom of thumb seam. 

Figure 4) the back and palm are one piece. This style of mitten 
is not as well liked for general use, as it does not conform so well 
to the shape of the hand as the two-piece pattern with separate 


The wrists of the small mittens are edged with fur. In the 
large mittens (see Plate X) an extra wrist piece forming a gaunt- 
let is added. For ordinary wear, the common seal is used (Plate 
Xa). The Ranger seal is used for fancy long winter mittens, 
but they are said to be cold (Plate Xb). The cuffs of the long 
mittens are tastefully trimmed with mink, muskrat, Arctic hare, 
or any other fur which may please the fancy of the maker. 
There appeared to be no indications that in Labrador certain 
materials were reserved for the men. The seams are sometimes 
piped with red flannel. 

The mittens used for dog driving have a waterproof palm made 
of dressed sealskin (Plate X d). This is to ensure a firmer grip on 
the whip as well as to keep the hand dry. Mittens of deerskin, 
handsomely decorated with floral designs in silk, are made by 
the Eskimo half-breeds on the one-piece pattern mentioned 
above. They represent an adoption of Indian material and 
design. Caribou skin tanned is sometimes used for facing 
mittens instead of water-proof dressed sealskin, but is a poor 
substitute. Moleskin mittens, with floral designs in coloured 
yarn, are found in the southern district (see Plate VIII B, c, 
and d). The handsome reindeer gloves common in Alaska are 
not seen in Labrador. 

Waterproof Mittens (arqa'q). 

The waterproof mitten (Plate VIII B a) is used at sea to keep 
the spray off the hands of the kayaker, also in the spring during 
damp sloppy weather. It is made on the same plan as the fur 
mitten, but the seams which are single and inside in the fur 
mitten, in the waterproof mitten are all double and on the outside 
as in the waterproof boot. The second seam, however, is only 
drawn over slightly. 

The pattern is in three pieces (see Figure 5), the front and 
half of the thumb, the palm and the opposite half of the thumb, 
and the back of the mitten. 

The sewing is started at the edge of the palm as in the 
ordinary mitten (Figure 5 a) ; then double-seamed (Figure 5 b) ; 
then, starting from the wrist, sewn to mark (Figure 5 c) ; then 


the outside seam (Figure 5 d) as in the leg of the boot. The top 
seam is gathered in and triple-stitched. The mitten is then 
turned and the inside of the top seam sewn to straighten the 

Figure 5. Pattern of waterproof mitten. 
1. Palm. 2. Thumb and front. 3. Back. 

a. Single overedge thumb seam. b. Double overedge thumb seam. 

c. Single overedge side seam. d. Double overedge side seam. 

e. Gather "a-'l-ox" top seam. 

gathers (Figure 5 e). If a cuff is desired, a folded strip is sewn 
on in the same way as the top strip of a boot, i.e., the ends of 
the strip are sewn together, and the strip overedged to the wrist. 


Cap (ne'suk). 

The cap is composed of five pieces similar to the one in the 
pattern (see Figure 6), also two earpieces, and a small peak. 

The crown is made by sewing the five pieces together, 
and then double-seaming (Figure 6 a and b). The lining is then 
sewn within the hem, leaving enough space at the bottom of the 
crown to stitch on the earflaps. The earflaps are stitched on 
and turned down so that they are fur side out when lying against 
the crown and lining side out when in use (Figure 6, No. 2). 
In other words, they are sewn on inside out so that they will 

Figure 6. Cap pattern. 
1. Crown pieces. 2. Flaps. 3. Peak. 

a. Seams for 5 pieces forming crown, 
b. Opposite seams for 5 pieces forming crown, 
c. Ear flap seam (inside). d. Peak seam. 

present the same furry appearance as the rest of the cap when not 
in use, and offer the protection of fur next to the skin when drawn 
down over the ears. They are edged with fur. The peak is 
stitched back to the crown (Figure 6 d) in modern caps. It 
appears to have outgrown its use, and is now purely ornamental. 
In the old-time caps, an old woman informed me, there was an 
inner peak, which offered a shade to the eyes. 

The cap is sewn from the inside, and then turned. Various 
materials are used. Foxlegs, martin, mink, muskrat, sealskin, 


loonskin, and even a mixture of several skins occur in different 
specimens (Plate IV). 

Trousers (ne'dlukox). 

Eskimo trousers are of two types, the short, somewhat baggy 
knee-trouser, and the long, tight-fitting trouser, which reaches to 
the ankle. The construction is practically the same allowing for 
the different shape. The accompanying illustration of a pattern 
(see Figure 7) is for the knee-length trouser. It is very simple, 

Figure 7. Trousers pattern. 

a. Back seam. b. Front seam. c. Leg seam, 

d. Hole for drawstring. 

consisting of a leg seam (Figure 7 c) and a back and front seani 
(Figure 7 a and b). The latter is continuous when the two sewn 
leg portions are brought together. The Eskimo trousers have no 
flap or other opening in front. A drawskin passing through a hole 
in the waistband holds them in place. Sometimes a piece of cloth 
is stitched around the top, but it is usually left plain. The bot- 
tom of the leg, however, is often ornamented with a strip of 
white skin, which shows at the knee above the boot (Plate III B). 


Cartridge Bag (apo'ktuk). 

The sewing of the cartridge bag (see Figure 8) begins at the 
bottom of the side insert (Figure 8 a) and continues up one side ; 
then the same operation is repeated for the other side. This squares 
the sides and the bottom. The loops are then sewn to the top 
corners of the bag (Figure 8 b), a sealskin thong is passed through 

Figure 8. Pattern of cartridge bag. 

1. Eyelet. 2. Side insert. 3. Body. 

a. Side seam. b. Eyelet seam. 

the loops, and the bag slung over the shoulder. Sealskin and cari- 
bou were formerly used for shot-bags, but duffle is mostly used 
now. Some of the modern bags are highly embroidered, reflecting 
designs borrowed from the neighbouring Indian tribes (Plate 
VIII A). For older types of bags see Plate IX. 

Men's Tobacco-bag. 

The men's tobacco-bag is cut out in one piece (see Figure 2, 
No. 2) and sewn around the edge with beads which are sewn on 


with the same stitch. The bags are decorated in floral designs with 
ordinary trade beads. Ancient bags, of which I was able to 
obtain a few specimens (Plate V b), were decorated with a 
native bead, and made with a sealskin centre and bead border 

Woman's Tobacco-bag, Old-style. 

This style, illustrated in the pattern (Figure 9) was formerly 
used by the Eskimo women. The bags were made of sealskin, 

Figure 9. Pattern of old style woman's tobacco pouch, 
a. Continuous seam. b. Opening^for hand. 

and worn inside the clothing, being tied around the waist. The 
opening in front is to admit the hand. One continuous stitch 
sewed up the bag all around (Figure 9 a). 


Dicky (a"tige). 

In making the Labrador hooded frock, commonly called 
the dicky, different materials deerskin, sealskin, or duffle are 
used. The pattern illustrated in Figure 10 is for the men's 
dicky, which is cut off square around the bottom, and does 
not present the swallow-tailed appearance of the women's 
garment. Women are also found wearing a square-cut 
dicky, both in Labrador and Baffin island. I was told by an 
Eskimo woman that the square dickys were worn by the un- 
married women, and the long- tails by the married women. 
Still we find young girls wearing the same long-tailed dickys 
as their mothers. This reference may be to adults. 

In cutting the material for the dicky, it is folded once, 
and the pattern is laid on the material with the middle length- 
ways. This enables the front portion of the dicky to be cut. 
Then the material is folded again and the back portion and hood 
cut in one piece. Then the two sleeves are cut out. This 
completes the cutting. 

In sewing, the side seams are formed by placing the back 
and front portions together (Figure 10 a) and the seam is sewn 
as far as the arm-pit, then double seamed (Figure 10 b); the 
shoulder seam is then sewn (Figure 10 c) and double-seamed 
(Figure 10 d). The top seam to the other half (Figure 10 e) 
completes the body portion. The sleeve-seam is next sewn 
and double-seamed (Figure 10 f and g), then the sleeve is turned 
and sewn in the sleeve hole in the body of the garment (Figure 
10 h), and also double-seamed (Figure 10 i). 

Some dickys have a pocket sewn on the side (Figure 10 j). 
The sewing of the flap of the pocket from the back (Figure 10k) 
and the hemming of the bottom of the dicky (Figure 101) com- 
plete the operation. 

The dicky is sewn from the inside and then turned; this 
avoids the seams showing. The Labrador and Ungava duffle 
dicky is trimmed on the bottom with two parallel lines of red 
or blue binding, which perhaps represent the fur lines of trim- 
ming in the original skin garment. The face of the hood is trim- 
med with fur. There is no such extensive application of a fur 

Figure 10. A"tige pattern. 

1. Sleeve. 2. Body. 3. Back and hood. 4. Pocket. 

a. Straight side seam. b. Double side seam. c. Straight shoulder seam. 

d. Double shoulder seam. e. Top seam. f. Straight sleeve seam. 

g. Double sleeve seam. h. Under arm seam. i. Upper arm seam. 

j. Pocket seam. k. Flap seam (inside). 1. Hem. 

appliqu6 border of square and diamond-shaped designs as ob- 
tains among the Alaskan Eskimo. 



SNOW-HOUSES (igluvi'gu'q). 

The art of building snow-houses is still practised by the 
Labrador Eskimo north of Hopedale. In southern Labrador, 
the custom has so nearly died out that the missionaries hold 
snow-building contests to keep alive the ancient art. 

The Eskimo of the east Labrador coast, particularly those 
around the Moravian stations, live for the most part in wooden 
huts. These little cabins form their permanent homes, but 
when out on hunting trips they have recourse to the indispen- 
sable snow-house shelter. White men, travelling in this section 
on long trips, take along native guides for building snow-houses. 
When they camp at night a small snow-house is quickly built, 
which is a most efficient shelter from the storms that otherwise 
might overwhelm them. 

The spot having been selected for a camp, the Eskimo tests 
an adjacent snowbank with his boots to see if it has the requisite 
firmness, or he thrusts his long snow-knife (pun'a") (Plate 
XXII B a) into it. For building purposes, the Eskimo prefer 
the "living" snow (cafiui'la'ktaq), i.e., snow which will adhere 
when the blocks are placed together. Such snow is found in a 
newly-made drift which has begun to harden. 

Across the surface of the snow-drift, the Eskimo cuts an 
oblong trench, the length of which equals the diameter of the 
house. It will average 5 feet in length, 2 or 3 feet in width, 
and 20 inches in depth. From the face of the trench, he cuts 
blocks (carilu'qtaq) about 6 inches thick, 30 inches long, and 20 
inches deep. The blocks are cut in semi-circular shape, with the 
inner edge slightly concave, so that when set up they lean 

The first line of blocks form the first tier of the snow-house, 
and material for the rest of the house is found within the ever 
lessening circle, so that the builder works within his ascending 
house, cutting out his material as he builds. One man only is 


required for the operation in Labrador, but where two Eskimos 
work, one is engaged in stamping the snow around the tiers, 
and in filling in the cracks between the blocks with soft snow. 
Sometimes one man cuts the blocks and the other builds, as in 
Baffin island, but one man is able to construct a house alone. 

When the first round of blocks has been laid, a cut is made 
diagonally in the tier, and the next round started in a spiral 
which winds in a decreasing curve to the top. The weight of 
the ascending blocks wedges those behind tightly together, so 
that the house really becomes more solid as each block is placed. 

The Eskimo always build "as the sun goes," i.e., from east 
to west, smacking each block tightly into place with a vigorous 
thrust of the arm. When the top is reached, the irregular 
opening left is closed with the keystone block ((qu'dlik), which is 
cut out to fit it exactly. The qu'dlik is lifted through and let 
in from the top, and, the outer edges being wider than the inner, 
it fits snugly in its place and its weight wedges it farther in 
(Plate XI A). 

If any length of time is spent in the snow-house, an outer 
wall is built about a foot from the house wall and snow packed 
in between. A smaller "lean-to," adjoining the house at the 
door, is built for the dogs. The present Labrador Eskimo snow- 
house is usually built without the entrance tunnel. Although the 
snow-houses appear only as an adjunct to hunting on the east 
coast of Labrador, in Ungava and on the east coast of Hudson 
bay the snow-house in winter and the deerskin tent ((tu"pik) 
in summer are the regulation dwellings. The Cape Chidley 
Eskimo formerly built snow-houses as the regular winter shelter. 
They were larger and more carefully made than the hasty little 
shelters constructed on the trail. The average height would 
accommodate a man standing, and the width would be from 
12 to 14 feet. Old missionary accounts speak of snow-houses 16 
feet high and 70 feet across, which the heathen Eskimo built to 
celebrate their winter festivals in. These ceremonial houses 
probably corresponded to the qaggi or singing-house of the 
Baffin-islanders (see Boas, The Central Eskimo, page 600). 

The northern Labrador snow-houses had the characteristic 
interior arrangement, with side platforms, on which the lamp was 


placed and the mitten drier and kettle swung, and beds made of 
reindeer skins laid over willow twigs. A slab of clear fresh- 
water ice was used as a window. The door was closed at night 
with a slab of frozen snow. The tunnel through which the house 
was entered ran uphill to the door. This ensured a constant 
supply of fresh air. It is said by Rasmussen that the Polar 
(or Smith Sound) Eskimo did not understand this ingenious 
variation, but used to build their tunnels on a level, until they 
learned better from immigrants from Cape York. 1 

Some Eskimo, who wished to live in a grander style, would 
join two or three snow-houses together by tunnels. One house 
then served as a living room; another, which was spread with 
polar bear skins, as the bedroom; and a third, as a storehouse. 
When the snow-house is first built, it is dazzlingly clean and 
beautiful. But it does not long remain so, owing to the accumu- 
lation of soot, rotten meat, and greasy clothing. It soon be- 
comes so filthy that even the Eskimos are forced to move out. 
Towards spring the roofs melt and fall in. The Eskimos then 
patch them with skins or else take to their tents, although it 
may be a month before the ice breaks up and the winter is over. 
The Cape Chidley Eskimo are a very hardy people. The mis- 
sionaries told me that they kept no fires in their homes, and com- 
plained of the heat when they visited their brethren to the south, 
who had stoves in their houses. Dr. Hutton, 2 in his vivid account 
of five years work among the Labrador Eskimo, mentions a 
characteristic incident of an old woman from Cape Chidley who 
went to Okkak to live. She complained bitterly of the heat 
in the houses. "It is breaking my life," she would say, "it is 
breaking my life." 

The natural covering of fat, obtained from his oily diet of 
meat and blubber, kept the old time Eskimo sufficiently warm. 


There still remain at Hebron, Okkak, and Killinek old stone 
iglus roofed with turf, some of which are inhabited. These are 
gloomy little huts, built partly underground, with a long entrance 

1 Knud Rasmussen, The people of the Polar north, p. 321. 

* Hutton, Among the Eskimos oj Labrador, Philadelphia, 1912. 


tunnel which furnishes ventilation, and an outside porch which is 
used for a storehouse. The iglus are 10 to 12 feet across, and the 
stone walls 3 or 4 feet high. The roof slopes to a peak or bowl- 
shape, and is upheld by rough branches and stumps of driftwood 
obtained from the sea. The floor is a mass of trampled mud. A 
sealskin-gut window lets in the light. The houses are narrow 
and low and indescribably dirty. 

These iglus reminded me strongly of the old stone houses of 
the Alaskan Eskimo in the Bering Strait district. The Central 
Eskimo make use of old stone houses of similar construction. 1 
From Steensby's description of the old stone huts of the Polar 
Eskimo, I should judge that they were made on the same general 
plan. It is well known that the Greenlanders make huts of stone 
and turf, and the Mackenzie River iglu is not materially different 
from the Alaskan. There appears to be one general plan of 
construction in all these old stone iglus. There is a partly 
underground room with stone walls. The roof is supported 
by stones or whale-ribs, or wooden timbers, according to which 
material is available, and covered with sod or dirt. Entrance 
is through a long tunnel of wood or stone, with or without a 
storehouse at the end or side. The inner arrangement, with 
stone or wooden platforms and window of seal gut, is not different 
from that of the snow-house, except in material. I am inclined 
to think from its prevalence in all parts of the Eskimo territory, 
that the old stone iglu is the typical Eskimo house rather than 
the snow-house, and that the latter is only a seasonal type 
which has developed into the typical house of those tribes, like 
the Copper and Central Eskimo, who build in winter on the sea- 


The old Eskimo tribes on the northeastern coast of Labrador 
formerly constructed houses of the bones of the whale, according 
to one of my informants. The sides were built of stones, and 
whale ribs, meeting in the middle overhead and overlaid with the 
shoulder-blades of the whale, formed the roof. Two large whale 
jaw-bones marked the entrance way, which was a long tunnel 

> See Boas. op. cit., pp. 548, 549. 


connecting with the house. As described, these houses are 
alike in every detail with the "jaw-bone" houses of Bering Strait 
district (as described by Nelson and Bogoras). Whalerib houses 
are also found in Baffin island. The Eskimo say that they are 
similar to the Tunnit houses (see page 149) but may be distin- 
guished from them by the comparatively narrow ground space 
occupied by the Tunnit house. 


These are small circular rock walls (see Figure 11), about 8 by 
4 feet, which are found set up at prominent lookouts and passes 

900 ^ 

O O 4 



Figure 11. Camp circles in Labrador. 

1. Recent camp circle. Stones for holding down tent, 
a. Fireplace of rocks. b. Mats of moss for sleeping. 

2. Oldstyle camp for the ancient double deer-skin tent. 
3. Fire-place with protecting wall to shield from the wind. 

where game was formerly abundant, and served both as a blind 
and temporary home for the hunter. They are said to have been 
covered with sealskins. Only the rock walls now remain, and 

Figure 12. Detail of masonry of ungaluk in Suglasuk bay. 

have been taken by some authors for Norse ruins andjookouts. 
The masonry is characteristically Eskimo, as the following 
sketch (Figure 12) shows; the detail of which was taken from an 


old stone shelter on Ka'givia'k island, Sugla"sirk bay. These 
ruins look very much like the stone blinds employed by the 
Eskimo of Bering strait, behind which they crouch with their 
long-handled bird-nets and sweep in the sea pigeons flying 
over. The same practice is found among the Polar Eskimo. 


In summer the Labrador Eskimo leave their snow-houses 
or huts, according to their location, and go camping to favourite 
hunting or fishing grounds. 

The ttrpik, or skin tent, is the universal shelter for summer. 
In early days, when deer were plentiful, the tent cover was made 
of deerskin. Plate XI B shows an old summer camp with a group 
of deerskin tents at Cape Chidley. Later, when deer became 
scarce, sealskins were used, as shown in the much-bepatched 
tents in Low's photograph of Wakeham bay. 1 

The structure of the old deerskin tent in Labrador was as 
follows : 

Two poles were erected to support the rear portion of the 
tent cover, and a single pole fitted into a pocket in the cover at 
the front. The front pole was brought back tight with a seal- 
skin cord, which was tied to the rear poles and formed the ridge 
pole. The front flap was left open in the daytime in fine 
weather and closed at night. Stones were placed all around the 
edges of the cover to hold it down and keep out the wind. A 
more modern way of pitching a tent was with a tripod (qa"nuk) 
of sticks. Stones were piled around the edges to keep the cover 
taut. Both types of tents are to be seen in the Cape Chidley 

Another form of the old deerskin tent, which is still used in 
Hudson strait and the east coast of Hudson bay, is illustrated in 
Plate XII. In this case the frame consists of three or four poles 
at one end and five at the other, upholding a wooden ridgepole. 
These tents are said to be very stable, and are sometimes even 
occupied in the winter. 

The modern canvas tent frame is formed of two uprights with 
a cross bar. Very few of the old skin tents are now to be 
seen on the Labrador east coast. 

1 A. P. Low, Cruise of the Neptune, p. 158. 




The Labrador dog-sled looks very clumsy and heavy to one 
accustomed to the light framework of the Alaskan sled, but the 
Labrador Eskimo say that this heavy construction is necessary 
to withstand the rugged country along the coast over which the 
trail leads. The sides are solid pieces and very strong. Old 
settlers told me of sleds that would bear a ton weight, or twenty- 
four dressed caribou. A thousand pounds is a good load. 

The Labrador sled has no handles behind, like the Baffin 
Island and Greenland sled, and is guided by the foot. It also 
lacks a break, and is held back by a thong attached to one of the 
rear cross-pieces. It is the simplest form found among the 
Eskimo, and really consists of only three parts; the two sides, the 
cross-pieces, and the shoes. The long, heavy, true native sled 
is not met with until one gets north of Nain. South of that point 
we get a civilized pattern, somewhat shorter and less wide. On 
the east coast of Hudson bay, 18 inches is the regulation width. 
It is an advantage to have a generally adopted width in following 
a trail already broken. The Hudson's Bay Company sled in 
use at the Labrador posts is modelled after the native pattern, 
and is very substantial for travelling. The usual price of a 
komatik is a dollar a foot. 

The two sides (wruynik, dual) are from 2 to 3 inches thick, 
4 to 8 inches deep, and 10 to 24 feet long, according to locality. 
The cross-pieces (ni'pu') are about 1 inch thick and from 3 to 6 
inches wide. The length varies according to the width of the 
sled, but is usually about 24 inches. The cross-pieces are placed 
on the komatik sides at a distance apart of from 4 to 6 inches, 
and extend two- thirds the length of the sled. They are notched 
at the ends, which project over the runners at the sides, so that 
the load may be lashed on. 

The cross-pieces are attached to the runners by rawhide 
lashings (nu-pulut) which run through holes bored in the sides 
(Plate XIII B). 


The shoes (pe'yox) are now of iron, but the Eskimo prefer 
shoes of whalebone or ivory, which slip over the snow with less 
resistance. In the old type of sled, small lengths of whalebone, 
deer antler, or walrus ivory were used (Plate XIV B b). This 
material came in lengths about 5 inches long. It was fitted to 
the sled with bone or wooden pegs. Some specimens of this old 
komatik shoeing were found among old graves and village 

During midwinter, from December to April, when the weather 
is coldest, the runners receive an extra coating of muck. This is 
made from reindeer moss mixed in a paste, and plastered over the 
ordinary runner. It is applied warm to about the thickness of 
an inch and moulded into a bevel shape like an iron rail. It is then 
smoothed down, and covered with a thin coat of ice. It slips 
over the frost-filled snow with little friction. The ice coating 
has to be renewed daily. 

The bridle (peta'q), by which the dogs are fastened to the 
sled, is a long heavy trace tied to the bow of the runners, passing 
through a hole in the front of the runners and over a notch made 
to receive it. The traces of the dogs are fastened to the bridle 
by an ivory button. The other end of the trace fastens in the 
harness (anu'k). 

The bridle is found in two forms in Labrador, i.e., the double 
bridle and single bridle. The double bridle is used on the east 
Labrador coast and down the Ungava coast to Fort Chimo; the 
single bridle is used by the "northerners," the Eskimo of Hopes 
Advance and other sections north of Fort Chimo. The advantage 
of the double bridle is that the traces of the dogs may be untangled 
without the driver stopping his team or getting off his sled. 

The line of the double bridle is looped through the hole 
under the first crossbar and tied in the middle, exactly equidistant 
from either side, so as to ensure an even haul (see Figure 13). 
The two ends, one long and one short, run out from the loop. 
To the short end is fastened an ivory button ; the long end is run 
through the loops at the end of the traces and brought back and 
fastened to the button on the short end. This gives free play 
to the traces, and allows them to be hauled in and untangled 
while still fastened to the line with the team travelling. 


In the single bridle, the bridle line runs out 
a short distance from the sled and the traces are 
fastened directly to it. The dogs crossing over 
cause the lines to become entangled. As the 
traces are fastened at a distance of 10 or 12 feet 
from the sled and there is only one line, they 
can not be hauled in without stopping the 
team, which occurs frequently, much to the dis- 
gust of a driver accustomed to the double bridle. 

The trace by which the dogs are fastened 
to the bridle is made of Bearded seal (irdjuk} 
hide. It is from 15 to 30 feet long, according 
to locality. In northern Labrador and Baffin 
island, traces may be 6 fathoms long. Each dog 
has a separate trace, and when travelling, the 
traces are regulated so that the team spreads 
out fanwise, with the leader slightly ahead and 
the rest of the team following one another 
(Plate XIII A). When a dog appears to be 
shirking, the driver shortens his trace. The 
harness (anu'k) is formed of a double loop of seal- 
skin, passing under the forelegs and over the 
shoulders and being joined in the middle of the 
back, where the trace is attached. 

The whip (ipiyau'tuk, from ipiyuk "flip- 
ping," i.e., "something to flip with") is made, 
in northern Labrador, of eight strands of 
Bearded seal (u~djuk) hide, which narrows down 
to four strands, then two, and the lash at the 
end. The whip is from 20 to 30 feet long, and 
it requires constant practice and considerable 
ability to handle it. It is very seldom used 
for punishment by a good driver, but once used 
is never forgotten. Dogs that have been fight- 
ing wildly will slink away whimpering at the 
hissing cut of the whip. Some drivers attain 
such dexterity that they can snap off the heads 
of ptarmigan along the trail (see Figure 14). 


C X 

O M 

<n o 

" 1 

ffi O 

O O 

-I- 1 2 

3 I 

OJ c/) 

2 Q 


- fe 

-G S 

* J 

bo . 

LL. ^2 



The average dog team is composed of from six to eight dogs. 
The leader is usually a female. A mother with her grown pups 
makes an unrivalled team. 

The words of command used in northern Labrador are : 
huit, go ahead, aw, stop, 

auq, to the right, r-r-r (trilled r), to the left. 
The whites and half-breeds use a corruption of the Eskimo 

The Labrador "husky" dog is not different in appearance 
from the Alaskan "malemute." The regulation marking of the 
latter, black with a white tipped tail, is not common in Labrador. 
The pure white strain, seen in Labrador and Ungava, on the other 
hand, is rather rare in Alaska. The greyish "wolf" colour is 
present everywhere. Outside of colour, the Labrador dogs do 
not appear to represent any variation from their congeners 
spread over the 5,000 miles of the Eskimo coast-line. They are 
a little hungrier and fiercer than the Alaskan dogs, probably 
from not being so regularly fed. In summer they are placed on 
an island, where, except for chance visits, they have to obtain 
their own food. The islands abound in mice, and capelin and 
other fish are thrown up by the tide. 


The use of the umiak (Plate XV c) or "woman's boat," has 
been entirely abandoned on the east coast of Labrador. It was 
in use among the heathen tribe at Nachvak, until the Hudson's 
Bay Company post at that point was abandoned, and they were 
consolidated with the Mission Eskimo. It is still in use in Wake- 
ham bay, an isolated post on the west coast of Ungava bay. 
A picture of Low's 1 gives a good idea of the comparative size of 
the umiak and the kayak. The immense load of people and 
supplies that these large, roomy, flat-bottomed boats will carry 
is almost unbelievable. They will hardly tip over, owing to 
their flat bottom, and are very seaworthy. In sailing they do 
not compare favourably with a whale boat, owing to their 
rather clumsy shape, but the Eskimo make voyages of 100 to 
200 miles in them quite easily. 

1 See Low, The Cruise of the Neptune, p. 64. 


The appellation "woman's boat" is not so appropriate in 
either Labrador or Alaska as it is in Greenland. In the former 
sections, we find the boat nearly always in charge of the men, 
who steer and handle the big oars; the women are only passengers. 
The boat is also used by the men in hunting large game, as whale 
and walrus. 

The stem and stern of the Labrador umiak are wider than 
the Alaskan, and the sides straighter in proportion to its length, 
giving it an unwieldy appearance. It lacks the "lines" of the 
Alaskan type. The kayak, on the other hand, is less broad than 
the Alaskan type and tapers gracefully. 

The Labrador umiak is usually about 25 feet long, although 
it is found in smaller models down to 10 feet. The stem and 
stern are nearly straight and the gunwales project, giving it 
an appearance of being really longer than it is. The keel is a 
straight piece of wood, about 4 inches wide, hewn from a single 
stick. The stem and stern posts are made from a Curved stick 
which, when worked down with the adze, gives the desired 
crook. They are firmly lashed to the keel with sealskin thongs. 
A series of cross-pieces make up the flat bottom and give the 
desired "spread." These cross-pieces are notched at the middle 
to fit on to the keel and at the ends to hold the bottom rail. 
The ribs of the sides rise alternately between the cross-pieces 
from the bottom rail to the gunwale, and are reinforced by the 
two side rails. The top rail or gunwale fits into notches in the 
tops of the ribs. A broad board at the stem and stern fits over 
the posts and under the gunwales, constituting the brace for 
the width of the boat, and forming a seat for the steersman. 
In the Labrador boats it is hard to tell which is stem and which 
stern, and the ends look as though they might be used indifferently. 
Three or four thwarts fit into the top rail, and reinforce the end- 
pieces. They may serve as seats, but the men usually stand up 
to handle the long oars. The rudder is hung over the stern, and 
handled as in a whaleboat. In Alaska, where the umiak is gener- 
ally propelled with paddles, the steersman uses an extra long and 
heavy paddle. We find oars employed in this section too, but 
not of the long and heavy Labrador type. The oars used in 
Labrador are very much like the long sweeps found on the Hudson 


Bay cargo boats, and may have been suggested by them. They 
equal two-thirds of the length of the umiak. They are placed 
on opposite sides of the boat in pairs, or one three-fourths of the 
way to the stem, and the other three-fourths of the way to the 
stern on the opposite side to keep the proper proportion. The 
rowlocks are formed of two thongs of sealskin, into which the 
oar fits, giving a leverage in each direction. The thongs can be 
tightened by wooden pegs, which are thrust between the rail 
and the skin cover when not in use. The Chesterfield Inlet 
boats, like the Alaskan, are equipped with a mast set into the 
keel and a square sail, which is drawn up by a pulley in the top 
of the mast. This may be an adaptation of white methods, 
although records show that it is met with quite early. The 
Labrador Eskimo boats do not use the sail, under ordinary 
conditions. When it is used, the helmsman keeps his direction 
with the sail, as well as the rudder, by means of two lines attached 
to the ends of the bottom of the sail, which he holds in his hands. 
The sail can be used only in a fair wind, as the umiak with its 
flat bottom cannot beat to windward. 

The covering of the umiak is made of big seal (u"djuk) 
skins. The skins are put on green, and stretched to their utmost 
capacity by the consequent drying. In sewing the skins to- 
gether, the women employ the double waterproof seam used in 
the boot. Holes are slashed in the margin of the covering and 
it is lashed down to the gunwales by a heavy line which is 
run under the second rail and pulled taut with all the possible 
strength of the operator. This tightening is continued whenever 
the boat cover becomes moistened through and stretches. 

Great care must be exerted in launching the umiak from 
the rocky shores, as the skin cover is easily cut. A dozen men 
will pick it up at the rails and half-carry, half-drag it down to 
the water. The umiak is not heavy considering its size. I was 
unable to find out whether the peculiar custom of landing the 
umiak broadside with a stem and stern line, which obtains in 
Bering .strait, is followed in Labrador. In winter the umiaks 
are put up on standards and the skin covering stored away from 
the dogs and other animals. In spring the covefr is oiled to 
keep it from cracking when it is put on the frame again. 



The shape of the kayak stem and stern, particularly the 
stem, varies much more than that of the umiak, from one section 
of the Eskimo world to. another. The Labrador and southern 
Baffin Island kayak is very long and heavy, with a broad level 
stern and long peaked stem (Plate XIV A b). Some of the 
older models have the stern slightly turned up. The Mackenzie 
River Eskimo kayak turns up in a half-moon shape at stem and 
stern (Plate XV a). This feature is said to have been also 
characteristic of the old type of East Greenland kayak. 1 The 
Alaskan kayak turns up at the stem, but slopes down a little 
at the stern (Plate XIV A a). The top rail projects at the stem 
and stern, forming a grip by which the hunter is hauled ashore 
when he lands. In certain sections, this is merely a hole sewn in 
the skin cover where the upper and lower rails meet in the stem. 
A model, in the Museum, of a three-hole Aleutian bidarka ex- 
hibits the same variation. The Alaskan kayak is wider and 
shorter than the Labrador type, and exhibits considerable 
variation in different sections of the coast. The entrance hole 
is round, and not raised in front as among the eastern types. 
The accompanying photographs (Plates XIV and XV), 
of models in the Museum, illustrate the most important vari- 

The frame of the kayak is made of driftwood, and the cover 
of Big seal (u"djuk} hide, or when this is not available, of the skins 
of the Harp seal (hi'foUK)? The instruments used in con- 
struction are the adze (u"limot), the drill, and the crooked 

The two long sticks forming the upper rims or rail (apu f ma"k) 
of the kayak are the first made. They are chipped and smoothed 
out with the adze and knife, and holes are bored in them with 
the drill where the ribs fit in and lashings are necessary. Then 
the other side-pieces (qiywteutuk) and the ribs (tulimauyuk, 
from tulima"q, rib) are shaped and fitted in, the ribs being let into 
the side-pieces about 1| inches and secured with wooden pins. 

1 Thalbitzer, The Ammassalik Eskimo, Copenhagen, 1914. 
1 Hudson bay, Ki'rolik. Northern Labrador, Nj'rolik. 


The ribs are placed quite close together, from 2 to 6 inches 
apart. The two rim pieces (rails) are then placed under heavy 
stones to retain their shape. The so-called keel or centre- 
piece (tu"nigak) is fitted in along with the side-pieces. Strictly 
speaking, the kayak has no keel, and any one of the six or seven 
side-pieces is as important as the other. Cross-pieces (a'yd'f) 
hold the rails apart on top, and an extra lengthwise strip runs 
from the entrance hole (pa f k) to the stern (itirbi'ri) and another 
to the stem (ma'si'n). The upper section is usually built before 
the bottom. It is placed upside down with heavy stones holding 
the upper rails in place, which gives the shape to the kayak. 
The ribs and side-pieces are then added. Space is left at the top 
centre of the frame for the entrance hole. 

The skin covering (ame'qsuk] is then sewn and placed on the 
kayak wet, and it draws tight on drying and shrinking. The 
sewing has to be completed at one sitting before the skins dry, 
so several women help. Double water-proof stitching, similar 
to that used in the umiak cover, makes the boat watertight. 
In Labrador, the kayaker has an entire suit (coat and trousers) 
of gutskin (Plate VI). A drawstring (o'yi'gut) is used to draw 
the waterproof coat around the rim of the hole (pa~k), as in other 
parts, and the upward slant of the frame of the kayak in front 
of the hole tends to divert the water. Why gutskin trousers 
are needed as well as a frock is not evident. It may be that on 
account of the protection of the upturned front of the hole, the 
drawstring is not much used, and a complete waterproof suit is 
worn instead. 

The Labrador paddle (pau'tiK), is double-bladed, like the 
Greenland type. It is quite long 10 to 12 feet. It is made of 
hardwood, when it is obtainable, otherwise of spruce, and tipped 
with ivory or bone, which is fastened to the wood with pegs of 
the same material. The paddle is used alternately on either side 
of the kayak, thus having a distinct advantage over the single- 
bladed Alaskan paddle, as far as economy of motion is concerned. 

Great speed is maintained by the Eskimo in their frail 
kayaks. It is said that a single Eskimo in a kayak will propel 
it as fast as two white men will a canoe. The Eskimo ventures 
out in a sea that an Indian would not dare attempt in his canoe, 


and appears none the worse for it. The Labrador Eskimo 
handle their long, heavy kayaks easily, but do not attain the 
expertness recorded of the Greenlanders, although their kayaks 
are of the same type as in southwest Greenland. Neither do 
they attempt the long coastal voyages which the Greenlanders 
take in summer in their kayaks. For long trips the umiak, and 
more recently the whaleboat, are used. 

Two thongs are sewn into the kayak in front to hold the 
harpoon rack and harpoon on one side, and the bird spear on the 
other; and behind the hole, two small loops are sewn to hold the 
seal hook and killing lance. The position of these weapons on 
the kayak is regulated by their use, the chief weapon to be used 
being at the right hand front of the hunter. Ordinarily, the 
harpoon occupies this position, and the bird-spear and throwing- 
stick are placed on the left front, the seal-hook on the right back, 
and the lance on the left back. The line of the harpoon lies in 
the rack in front of the hunter; the harpoon is held in the right 
hand and the coil in the left when the harpoon is thrown from the 
kayak. If the harpoon line has a float attached, it rests on the 
boat just back of the hunter and is thrown into the water after 
the harpoon is launched. In northern Labrador, a circular 
hoop-like float, called the nau'la-taq (Labrador) or nau'la-tay 
(Baffin island), is attached to the float, and being dragged at right 
angles through the water, soon lessens the pace of the fleeing 
game. This attachment is found in Baffin island, from whence 
it is perhaps derived. 1 

On the left hand side of the hole (pa'k) of the kayak is a seal 
thong loop, to which game is attached and towed home, after it 
has been brought alongside with the seal hook. 



The Equipment of the Kayaker. 

Nearly all the hunting on water now is done by the Labrador 
Eskimo in the kayak, which is fully equipped with the various 

1 See Boas, The Central Eskimo, p. 500. 


weapons employed in taking sea game. The umiak was formerly 
used in whaling, but has passed out of existence except in isolated 
spots in Ungava and on the east coast of Hudson bay. 

Sealing Harpoon (see Figure 15). 

First and foremost in the kayaker's equipment is the sealing 
harpoon (nau'leq) which rests, ready for use, on the right hand 
front of the hunter, with its complement, the coil of line 
(a"tlaunaq) , lying in the rack directly in front of the hunter, 
and the float (a"vataq) directly behind. The sealing harpoon 
has a heavy wooden shaft (igimu'k, Labrador) 6 to 8 feet long, 
which terminates in an ivory head (qa-ti'rn) about 2 inches long, 
into which the foreshaft, made of a walrus tusk, fits. The fore- 
shaft is kept in its place in the socket of the ivory head by two 
parallel lines of sealhide on either side, which prevent it from 
inclining to one side. The ingenious fastening of the thongs is 
illustrated in the accompanying drawing, taken from Boas' 
work on the Central Eskimo (see Figure 16). In the side of the 
wooden shaft, just where the harpoon properly balances for 
throwing, is inserted an ivory or wooden plug to prevent the hand 
from slipping. The harpoon head (tu-ka'q) fits on to the pointed 
end of the foreshaft by means of a thimble-shaped hole gouged 
out at the end, and is kept taut on the foreshaft by a line running 
through two holes back of its iron point (qau'leq) and fastened 
by an ivory eye (telu'ypik) or a simple loop in the line to an ivory 
pin on the foreshaft, situated on the front side of the shaft next 
to the handhold. It should be noted that the fastening of the 
line is on the opposite side from the curve of the tusk, forming 
the foreshaft, which gives an added tension to the line and keeps 
it from going slack. ''There is a reason for everything," as an 
old Eskimo said who was explaining the harpoon to me, and his 
remark seems justified when we consider the ingenious adapt- 
ation of each fixture of the harpoon. 

When the game is struck, the head breaks off from the 
foreshaft, and the stricken animal is played directly from it. 
The foreshaft unjoints at the head of the shaft and both 
float safely away, to be picked up later by the hunter. (In a 


- Q 

Figure 16. 

Manner of attaching the two principal 
parts of the harpoon. 

From Boas, The Central Eskimo, 
Fig. 420, p. 489. 


country where material is so scarce, some such contrivance 
is a necessity.) In the meantime, line is payed out as needed, 
and the kayaker attempts to get near enough to the wounded 
animal to dispatch it with the killing lance. If it dives deeply 
when struck or puts up a formidable struggle, which may upset 
the kayak, the float and drag are thrown overboard, and the 
animal is allowed to wear itself out before receiving the final 

Lance (see Figure 17). 

The lance (anyo'^iyuk, "the killer") is about the same size 
and construction as the kayak harpoon, with the exception that 
it has a fixed head. The head is usually of iron or ivory with a 
heavy iron point. In old weapons slate and flint were used. 
Having no line, the button at the side for fastening the same on 
the harpoon, is absent. Another variety has a longer, more 
slender shaft, and a long point set into the shaft and firmly 
lashed. This variety looks like a more modern contrivance. 
The point is over a foot long, and is said to be used for deer, 
which are killed when crossing the river mouths and inlets. 

Seal Hook (see Figure 18). 

When the game has been dispatched with the lance, it is 
drawn along and secured with the sealing hook (ne'tceq). The 
sealing hook is a long wooden shaft (12 to 15 feet) with an iron 
hook in the end. The handle is notched to secure a firmer hold 
in handling the quarry. The sealing hook, it will be remembered, 
rests on the back of the kayak, together with the lance. 

Bird-spear (see Figure 19a). 

There still remains the bird-spear, at the left hand of the 
hunter in front. The modern bird-dart consists merely of a 
light wooden shaft and the triple-pronged point of iron or ivory, 
6 to 10 inches long. The old-style bird-dart (nu'ik} had three 
ivory prongs which were notched or barbed. Figure 19b shows 
the extra trident at the middle of the spear (at the point of 
gravity) seen also in specimens from Baffin island and Alaska. 




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The bird-spear is launched with the throw-stick (nuqouq) 
(see Figures 20 and 21) a wooden implement about 12 to 14 

Figure 20. Throwing-stick from Cape Wolstenholme, Labrador. 
Length 18 inches. 
Collected by E. W. Hawkes. Division of Anthropology, Museum No. IV B. 492. 

Figure 21. Spear thrower, from Great Whale river, Labrador. 
Length 17 inches. 
Collected by A. P. Low. Division of Anthropology, Museum No. IV B. 69. 

inches long, with a groove on one side into which the end of the 
spear shaft fits. In some old specimens there is an ivory button 
at the end of the shaft which fits into a socket in the groove. In 
modern spears this is represented by a short bit of iron or a nail. 
This gives a secure hold to the spear shaft and perhaps an ad- 
ditional impetus to the throw. 

The spear shaft is supported by three fingers of the hand, 
which fit into grooves at the side of the throw-stick, while the 
first finger slips through a hole behind them. The thumb fits 
into a groove on the opposite side and turns down on the spear. 
In delivering the bird-spear, the forearm is drawn back until 
nearly perpendicular, with the thumb supporting the spear 
shaft, and the three fingers giving it the necessary direction. 
After delivery, the throw-stick is thrust under the sealskin 
thong by the hole, and the paddle, which is held in the left hand, 
put in motion. The aim of the kayakers with the bird-spear is 
very good, and they throw a hundred feet with remarkable 


The bird-spear is used mostly in the spring when the young 
ducks, still unable to fly, are fluttering and swimming around 
the rookeries of the rocky coast in great numbers. During this 
season the hunters make large catches in a short time. 

The Bow and Arrow. 

The bow and arrow have been entirely superseded in Labra- 
dor by the rifle as a hunting weapon. The specimens obtained 
for the Museum were used by a party of Eskimo who were 
cast away on Mansel island for a number of years and forced to 
the manufacture and use of primitive weapons. 

The bow (Plate XVI f) is what Murdoch calls the "Arctic 
type," i.e., with a straight shaft and ends curved inward. It is 
made of fir, reinforced with a single twisted sinew strand at the 
back. A bow collected by A. P. Low in Labrador (Plate XVI g) 
has a sinew backing of ten twisted strands, which are looped over 
the "nosk" at the ends, and gathered in at the middle and the 
ends by transverse strands. In both bows the bowstring, 
which is several times heavier than the backing, is attached to a 
sealskin thong at the ends. The bows are from 32 to 36 inches 
in length, being fully a foot shorter than similar types among 
the Alaskan Eskimo. They are 1| inches wide, thicker and 
slightly rounded at the handle, and flattened and considerably 
thinned at the ends. 

There are no data at hand to show whether the Labrador 
Eskimo ever used the antler bow of three pieces bound with 
sinew found in Baffin island, or the long "Tartar" type, found 
among the Copper and Alaskan Eskimo. It might be noted 
that the sinew reinforcement of the Labrador bow is lengthways 
and not lateral as in some western types. The Labrador Eskimo 
probably never experienced much difficulty in securing wood for 
their bows, so were not obliged to adopt splicing of antler and 

The arrows are sound pieces of wood, flattened and notched 
at the end. The wood at the end is not split to admit the 
feathers, as in the Alaskan arrow, but they are attached with 
sinew to each flattened side (see Figure 22). The other end 


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is cut off obliquely and the bone or ivory foreshaft fastened to it 
with sinew. The iron arrowpoint is set into the bone foreshaft 
and riveted in some specimens (see Figures 23 and 24). In others 
the foreshaft and point are hammered out of one piece of iron. 
Another variety has a blunt ivory or iron point, probably used 
for stunning birds and small game. 

The Labrador bow and arrow is not so formidable a weapon 
as types in other sections, and probably was used more for 
hunting than as an offensive weapon. The bow and arrows 
with which they fought the Montagnais and other tribes may 
have been of a larger and stronger type. The shape of the 
present wooden bow is similar to the three-piece antler 
bow of Baffin island (see Boas, Figure 440) and the Labrador 
Eskimo may have used this material, as well as wood, although, 
as mentioned above, there is no definite information at hand 
on this point. I did collect from old village sites some for- 
midable bone and stone points which would seem to require 
greater motive power than given by the present bow. One of 
these much resemble_s the deer arrow mentioned by Murdoch as 
in use among the Point Barrow Eskimo, which is not fastened 
to the shaft but comes loose from its socket and remains 
in the wound after the shaft is shaken out. It eventually 
results in the death of the animal. It appears to be a carrying 
over of the harpoon idea into smaller weapons. Plate XVI h 
shows a Labrador bow with the ends bent outward. This is a 
much more powerful bow than the type described above, and 
similar to the large bows used by the Western Eskimo for 
hunting large game and for fighting. 

The Bow-case (Plate XVII a). 

The bow and arrows are carried in a case consisting of two 
parts which are joined together in the middle; one part for the 
bow and one for the arrows. The two parts are made of one piece 
of deerskin sewn at the edges with an overhand stitch.' The 
bow projects slightly from the end of its cover to admit of quick 
handling. The case is tied together with a thong at the end, 
and slung over the back. The bow cases are roughly made of 


dressed deerskin and do not exhibit the care the Eskimo are 
accustomed to exert on their outfits. Perhaps this is because 
the case is not always used, the bow and arrows often being 
carried in the hand. 


The Eskimo of the east Labrador coast used to hunt whales 
from the larger bays and inlets, such as Nachvak and Hopedale. 
The Eskimo name for Hopedale (Ai'vil'ik "whaling place,") 

Figure 25. Ivory harpoon head with iron point, from Joksut, Labrador. 
Length 6 inches. 
Collected by E. W. Hawkes. Division of Anthropology, Museum No. IX A. 47. 

suggests its former use. Whaling was carried on until recent 
years at Nachvak. The humpback was the principal quarry. 

For striking the whale, a harpoon of a heavier type than the 
kayak harpoon was used. The shaft was longer and heavier 
and the point much larger. Figure 25 represents an old whaling 
harpoon point from Cape Chidley. To the harpoon line several 
large floats were attached at intervals in bunches of three or 
more, to impede and mark the flight of the whale. When the 
whale had become exhausted and the umiak was able to get 
near enough to it, it was killed with a long-handled lance 
(anyo'^ifukY with broad blade of bone or flint. The divings and 
struggles of the wounded whale sometimes upset the boat and 
resulted in a catastrophe to the crew, as noted in the tale concern- 
ing some Tunnit (see page 149). 

At the present time, the larger species of whale have almost 
entirely disappeared from the coast, and the Eskimo turn their 
attention to the never-failing supply of beluga, or white whales, 

1 Literally, "the killer." 


which is a regular industry in Ungava, as described in the section 
on food. The white whales are shot, speared, or taken in nets 
at low tide. They form a regular Arctic article of export for the 
Hudson's Bay Company posts in northern Labrador. They yield 
a large amount of fat and meat, and their hides are valuable. 
The flesh is whitish in colour and is a welcome change after a 
prolonged diet of seal meat. Plate XXXV B shows a party of 
Eskimo women at one of the northern Moravian stations, cutting 
up white whales. 

The polar bear is hunted with dogs. When a bear is sighted , 
the dogs are loosed and form a ring around him, bringing him to 
bay. They snarl and snap at him from all directions, taking 
care to keep just out of the reach of the sweep of his great paws. 
While he is engaged with the dogs, the hunter comes up and 
shoots him. Unless he is hit in a vital spot, it takes several shots 
to dispatch a polar bear. The peculiar shape of the head and 
shallow brainpan makes a shot in the head not always fatal. 
One polar bear shot during this trip received two bullets in the 
ear without succumbing, and did not give up the battle until a 
heavy bullet shattered the entire top of his head. Others got 
away with enough lead in their body, it would seem, to sink 
them. The polar bear, when attacked on land, always makes 
for the nearest water, consequently when natives run across them 
in summer, they try to get between them and the water. I was 
told by an old hunter that the old males hibernate in summer in 
the caves in the rocky country of northern Labrador. One 
hunter would drive them out by stamping and shouting on top 
of the cave from the rear, while the other stood on guard with his 
rifle at the entrance. Female bears with their young were taken 
in the same way in the snow-houses which they scoop out for 
themselves and their young in the spring. In old times the 
harpoon, of course, took the place of the rifle. It was thrust 
into the ribs of the bear, while he was making a sweep at one of 
the dogs surrounding him. Heavy arrows were also used. Old 
Eskimo say that some of their hunters could use the sinew- 
backed bow with such force that it would drive an arrow 
through a bear. 


Deer were taken when they came out to the inlets or mouths 
of rivers on their annual migration. They were usually pursued 
while in the water, and killed with a deer spear, a long slender 
shafted lance with an iron blade and foreshaft. Turner says 
that the weapon used by the Labrador Eskimo and the Naskapi 
is the same (see Figure 137 in Ethnology of the Ungava district). 

Figure 26. Bone lance head with iron point, from Eskimo point, west 
coast of Hudson bay. Length 7 inches. 
Collected by E. W. Hawkes. Division of Anthropology, Museum No. IX C. 7. 

Figure 26 represents a kayak spear of the older type, an iron 
blade riveted to a bone foreshaft, which an informant told me 
was used formerly for deer. 

Walrus hunting was carried on much the same as whaling. 
When the ice first broke up, and began running, great herds of 
walrus appeared, sleeping on the floating pans and playing in the 
water. Nachvak bay, Charles island, and Cape Driggs were great 
resorts for walrus. Several places in northern Labrador and 
Hudson strait take their names from the presence formerly of 
great herds of walrus in those localities, as Walrus point, Walrus 
island, etc. The walrus seem to prefer a point or bay with a 
shelving beach on which they can drag themselves up without 
much difficulty. They were hunted by crews in the umiak, or, 
according to the older style, a party of men would encircle them 
in kayaks and drive the herd towards the shore. A full grown 
walrus is almost too much for a single man to handle in the 
kayak. Formerly they were harpooned and lanced with weapons 
somewhat larger and heavier than those used for seal. When 
rifles were introduced, the old weapons were discarded, although 
the harpoon was often necessary to save the game. 

The Alaskan Eskimo have a taboo that walrus must always 
be hauled up on the ice to be cut up, and this must never be done 


in the boat. As the whale (bowhead) is too heavy to be thus 
disposed of, it is cut up in the water, but its eye (the one appearing 
out of the water) is slit, so that it may not see the operation. 
Probably there is the idea involved here that it is distasteful to 
the inua (genius) of the animal to have its body disposed of out 
of its native element or amid strange surroundings. There is 
a trace of the same idea in Labrador, where they slit the eyes 
of the seal. 

There appears to be a specialization in Labrador of the 
general food taboo in that walrus and seal meat must not be mixed 
any more than deer meat and seal meat. Whale meat is also 
kept strictly separate from deer meat, and the instruments used 
in cutting up the whale must be bound with seal thongs rather 
than sinew. Torngarsoak, the chief deity of the Labrador 
Eskimo, is offended if any instrument suggesting the deer is 
employed on the whale. 


The taking of small game, as wolves, foxes, hares, ptarmigan, 
and waterfowl, is done with the aid of a variety of ingenious 
traps and nooses. 

The old natives say that wolves were formerly quite numer- 
ous in the Labrador interior. They followed the great bands of 
migrating reindeer, on which they fed. In winter they approach- 
ed the coast and rifled traps and tore down meat caches, and even 
attacked the dogs in the villages. Dogs were useless as a 
defence against the marauders, for, although a team of Eskimo 
dogs will hold a huge polar bear at bay, they will not attack 
a wolf. 


When the wolves become too bold and annoying, the 
Labrador Eskimo employ a little device, also used by the Point 
Barrow Eskimo, which effectually thins their numbers. A 
sharp, slender strip of whalebone is tied up in folds with a small 
sinew and placed inside a chunk of blubber. It is thrown out at 
night, when the wolves prowl around the villages, and quickly 


freezes. The wolf comes along, scents this tempting morsel, 
and bolts it without stopping to ask any questions. As soon as 
the natural heat and acids of the stomach dissolve the blubber 
and string, the whalebone string is released and springs out, 
cutting the walls of the wolf's stomach severely. Speedy death 
results ; the wolf will be found only a short distance away. 

Foxes were taken in stone traps, built up in the form of a 
four-sided enclosure, with a little hole in the roof. Bait was 
placed inside, and the fox, having jumped in, could not get out. 
In another kind there was a trap door which fell and made him 
prisoner. Another trap was built on the principle of the dead- 
fall, and when the fox touched the bait, a heavy slab of stone was 
released and crushed the fox. Ruins of these old stone traps are 
to be seen all over the northern Labrador coast. 

For the taking of those other scavengers, the gulls, the 
Cape Wolstenholme Eskimo used to make a hook of two pieces 
of deer antler. This was attached to a long line. One piece 
was tied back to the other with a light strip of sinew, so that, 
when released, it would spring out at right angles again. The 
hook was baited with blubber, and, being covered with the fat, 
eagerly swallowed by the voracious gulls. On the hook entering 
their stomach, the fat melted and the barb was released, holding 
them fast. They were then easily hauled in by the hunter. 


For the taking of waterfowl, the Labrador Eskimo, like 
those of other sections, use the whalebone snare. As indicated 
in Plate XVII b, this consists of a series of nooses suspended 
from a strip of whalebone. They are set with wooden pegs along 
the shore of lakes and inlets where waterfowl abound, as in the 
picture, or placed on rocks near the rookeries and held down by 
a stone at each end. The swarming birds step through the 
loops, which draw fast. The fluttering of one prisoner attracts 
more, and in an evening a native will get fifty to a hundred of 
the smaller birds. The favourite time for setting these traps is 
in the early evening, when the birds that have remained in their 
clefts in the rocks during the day come out to feed on the myriad 
small flies and gnats which they find on the surface of the water. 


A larger snare or noose is used for ptarmigan and hares. 
Single looped traps are set in the holes of squirrels. The 
children catch the small rodents, with which the tundra 
teems, with miniature snares, or shoot them and the small 
birds with toy bows and arrows. Birds are pursued in the 
kayak during the moulting season. When they dive, their 
direction can be traced by the bubbles left on the surface of the 
water. An Eskimo, by tiring them out, can catch them with his 
hand; this is considered a sport rather than serious hunting. 
Another feat is to run down a young fawn in the spring when the 
snow is heavy and to capture it alive. 

The sling (Plate XVII c) furnishes a great deal of amuse- 
ment for the half-grown boys who will follow waterfowl along the 
shore with it for hours, but although they attain considerable 
dexterity, it seems to yield more pleasure than profit. I have 
no information that the bird bola is found among the Labrador 


The most important fish of the many kinds that visit the 
Labrador coast, from a native standpoint, are the salmon and 
trout, and on these two they mainly depend. Great quantities 
of cod are now taken, thanks to missionary teaching, but did not 
constitute so important a place as salmon in the original native 
economy. When the ice first breaks up, the salmon spawn. 
While the "run" is on, they are taken in large numbers with the 
fish spear (kuqivuq). The fish spear has a long, slender shaft from 
12 to 15 feet long, which widens towards the end to accommodate 
a triple prong. This is formed of a straight point in the middle 
and two side barbs (Figure 27). The side pieces slope outward, 
and their elasticity is further increased by binding to the shaft 
with sinew. In the older specimens they are of bone or ivory 
with antler or iron barbs; in modern specimens, of wood with 
iron barbs turning downward to meet the point which projects 
from the middle of the shaft. The turning in of the barbs 
admits of the fish being pierced by the centre point, when the 
barbs spring out and securely hold it. When salmon are not 
plentiful, a small ivory or stone miniature fish is used as a lure. 


The northern Labrador natives also under- 
stood the making of dams across streams empty- 
ing into the sea, in which the salmon are shut 
off at low tide. It is not definitely known 
MJ whether before their contact with the whites the 


5 vd Labrador Eskimo used fish nets or not. A 

'^ -* discussion of this point occurs in the historical 

^ w introduction. 

jy ~ For trout (e'rkaluk, northern Labrador; 

"o j exa'hipik, southern Labrador) the Eskimo fish 

with an iron hook set into a piece of wood and 

bound fast with sinew. In old specimens the 

j| material for the hook is of ivory or fish-bones. 

o - The line is of twisted sinew or whalebone fibre, 


2 ^o and is wound up on a short notched pole, when 

j g. the fish is caught and hauled in. Tomcod are 
caught through the ice in winter. Trout are split 

3 < and dried in the same manner as salmon. The 
native method of curing was dealt with in the 

section on food (page 34). 

> .22 

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One of the items of Eskimo material culture 

is the use of the stone lamp (qu'dlik) , a feature 

which marks them off sharply from the Indian 

*" x tribes of North America. The w/w, or "woman's 


t-: +5 knife," has been copied by the Cree, Monta- 

u = gnais, and other northern Indian tribes, and 

|) U the "crooked knife" perhaps borrowed from 

them in turn; the Athabaskan has copied the 

Eskimo fur a"tige in his clothing; the stone 

kettle, as Wissler suggests, may possibly be a 

copy of the square bark kettles of the Indian, 

although this does not seem very probable; the 

Eskimo waterproof skin boot and deerskin sock 


are articles of trade with neighbouring tribes; but in no case 
does another contiguous tribe appear to have adopted the 
lamp, which remains intrinsically Eskimo. 

The Eskimo lamp, in various parts of the Eskimo world, 
is made of different materials according to which are accessible. 
Thus, in the east, soapstone is the main material, pottery has 
been used in Alaska, and sandstone in Siberia. Labrador 
specimens are made of steatite, a variety of soapstone. 

The old lamps are of a simple saucer shape (Plate XVIII A a 
and B a). More modern specimens (Plate XVI 1 1 B b) have the 
sides regularly and sharply accentuated, forming a definite rim 
around the bowl. This lamp, from northern Labrador, ap- 
proaches the Central Eskimo lamp, an almost perfect specimen 
of which proportionally (Plate XVIII B d), is one from Chester- 
field inlet. The Labrador lamps will hold from a pint to two or 
three quarts of oil. One old specimen from a grave in northern 
Labrador (Plate XVIII A b) has the ridge characteristic of the 
Alaskan lamp. This regulates the feed of oil to the wick on the 
straight edge, and is perhaps a later development of Eskimo 
invention. This lamp is considerably larger and deeper than 
the other Labrador specimens, measuring 12 by 18 inches, 
with the ridge 1 inch thick. On Coats island, Hudson bay, a 
lamp was obtained from an old grave (woman's) which was 
simply a stone hollowed out by the water, that had evidently 
been picked up on the beach. 

This was found in company with one of the old kettles 
made of limestone slabs tied together with sinew (also found 
on Southampton island) and two firestones of pyrites. The use 
of naturally hollowed stones suggest that it may have led to 
the making of artificial shapes which resulted in the present 
Eskimo lamp. The lamp, as we find it among the Eskimo, 
appears to be their own invention. 

The case of the stone kettle is not so unique, although it 
would suggest itself as the natural complement of the lamp. 
It is suspended over the lamp, and used for boiling meat. At the 
present time, the old stone kettle has been entirely superseded 
by modern articles offered by the Hudson's Bay Company, 
and specimens are very rare and hard to obtain. Three speci- 


mens were obtained from northern Labrador and Ungava; one 
ordinary-sized kettle is seen in Plate XIX a , one very small 
specimen (Plate XX c), and one very large kettle (Plate XIX b), 
the measurements of which are given below. The small specimen, 
which came from an old grave, has two holes bored in the bottom. 
All lamps and kettles placed on graves were treated in like 
manner, to liberate the inua of the utensil and allow its use by the 
shade of the owner in the other world. All the kettles have 

Figure 28. End of limestone kettle, length at top, 135 mm.; at bottom, 123 

mm.; height, 108 mm.; thickness, 5 mm. From Coats island. 
Collected by E. W. Hawkes. Division of Anthropology, Museum No. IX B. 33 

holes bored at the four top corners, in which the thongs were 
placed by which they were suspended. Old hunters have told 
me that caribou meat boiled in a soapstone kettle was much 
tenderer than that boiled in an ordinary kettle, the heat being 
more evenly sustained. They also said that it took nearly an 
hour to get the kettle boiling over the lamp, but that, once hot, 
it kept its temperature for a long time. Turner says that the 
Ungava method was to put heated stones in the kettle. 1 In 
that case the custom must have been derived from the Indians. 

The Labrador Eskimo make miniature models of their 
lamps and kettles (Plates XVIII Be; XX d), which they preserve 

1 Turner, Ethnology of the Ungava district, llth Annual Report of Bureau of American 
Ethnology, p. 231. 


carefully. They say that as long as the models do not break or 
crack the originals will not. 

From Coats island I collected a limestone kettle, similar to 
those formerly used on Southampton island. It has been 
fastened together with sinew. Holes had been bored in the thin 
slabs from both sides. The bottom slab was let into a groove 
in the end slabs and cemented with a mixture of hair and blood. 
Figure 28 shows an end piece, the measurements of which 
were as follows: 

Limestone Kettle. 

Length at 

Length at 




145 mm. 
135 mm. 

125 mm. 
123 mm. 

100 mm. 
108 mm. 

5 mm. 
5 mm. 


The measurements 1 of the Labrador stone kettles are as 
follows : 

Labrador Stone Kettles. 







Small (Plate XX c) 
Medium (Plate 
XIX a) 

117 mm. 
320 mm. 
520 mm. 

125 mm. 
330 mm. 
570 mm. 

245 mm. 

250 mm. 
365 mm. 

42 mm. 
150 mm. 
170 mm. 

5 mm. 
23 mm. 

Large (Plate 
XIX b) 

From the measurements it will be noted that the sides are 
curved, while the ends are straight. The slope of the sides is 
inward and the dimensions of the bottom greater than the top, 
except in the limestone kettles. There is a groove around the 

1 The measurements given above are for the exterior of the kettles. The ends of the 
kettles are generally thicker than the sides. In the large specimen (Plate XVIII A b) there 
i s a distinct ridge at either end on the outside. 


top of the medium-sized pot and a half-moon shaped indentation 
in the sides to admit of handling. The kettles will hold from a 
half-pint to three or four gallons. 

Measurement of Labrador Eskimo Lamps. 

at rim 




Plate XVIII Ba.... 

255 mm. 

145 mm. 

55 mm. 


Plate XVIII A a.... 

340 mm. 

290 mm. 

85 mm. 

40 mm. 

Plate XVIII Bb.... 

320 mm. 

135 mm. 

30 mm. 


Plate XVIII B d.... 

360 mm. 

165 mm. 

50 mm. 

15 mm. 

Plate XVIII A b.... 

430 mm. 


75 mm. 

20 mm. 

These figures can only be approximate, as the specimens 
are not exactly proportional and are irregular at the edges. 
Plate XVIII B b and Plate XVIII Ab are cut off at the ends 
(Plate XVIII Bb intentionally), so that 20 and 40 mm. should 
be added to their relative length. The average height was 
obtained by noting the average between the height at the rim 
and back. As the lamp sits in its natural position, the back is a 
half inch higher as a rule. The thickness was obtained by 
averaging the thickness at the face of the rim and back. The 
bottom is generally heavier. The figures will give an idea of 
the relative size of the stone lamp and kettle, and furnish com- 
parisons for lamps from other sections. 

In the snow huts we find a semi-circular frame (ingetak) 
with a coarse network of seal thongs, resting on a support above 
the lamp and kettle. This is used for drying mittens and wet 
clothing. The lamp often rests on a wooden support, hollowed 
out at the top. The kettle is suspended by sealskin thongs from 
the support on which the ingetak rests. 


The shallow wooden dishes (pagutu'x) used by the Labrador 
Eskimo are made of larch wood, and conform, in modern sped- 


mens (Plate XXI c), to civilized patterns. They are used for 
holding food and oil. The older shape is a shallow oval. Wooden 
spoons (di'psif) now in use (Plate XXI a and b), of the same 
material as the dishes, represent the ancient bailer. The Labrador 
Eskimo possess an unusual ability for carving in wood (see section 
on art) , and reproduce in that material many of the household 
objects of musk-ox, horn, and whalebone found in Baffin island. 
Buckets and cups are made of strips of larch wood bent circular 
and bottomed, and held tight with wooden or ivory pegs. Some 
older specimens from the graves are of whalebone. They also 
make buckets and cups of tanned sealskin sewn with sinew. 
These are common throughout the Hudson Bay country. The 
specimens illustrated (Plate XX a and b) are from Chesterfield 
inlet, but do not differ from those found in Labrador. The 
cup or bailer in Labrador usually has a thong handle. 


The skin scraper, used on sealskins and deerskins, is found in 
Labrador in three definite types. Type I, a form developed 

Figure 29. Bone scraper made from the jaw-bone of a narwhal, from Cape 

Chidley. Length S inches. 
Collected by E. W. Hawkes.Di vision of Anthropology, Museum No. IV B. 477. 

from the scapula of the reindeer (Plate XXI I A e), which is itself 
often used in the summer camp, is represented by the modern 


instrument with a wooden handle and tin or iron blade. This 
seems to be a typical Eskimo instrument. An interesting 
variant is seen in a specimen from Cape Childey (see Figure 29), 
made from the jaw of a narwhal, where the broader surface 
presented must have suggested itself to the Eskimo 1 as a more 
effective instrument. 

Type II is found in the leg bone of the deer, where the knob 
produced by the ball of the joint forms a convenient handle 
(Plate XXII A b). This type is reproduced in stone in two 
specimens (Museum Nos. IV C 777 a and b) from Chesterfield 
inlet. It is seen in the stone-bladed scraper with a knob or 
projection at one side of the wooden handle, 2 and in the modern 
type ((Museum No. 398 a) with a metal blade. This also 
appears to be a characteristic Eskimo type developed from the 
bone original. It is perhaps not quite correct to consider the 
evolution of material in point of time, as we often find all 
three bone, stone, and wood and tin scraper in use at the 
same time, and the Eskimo have a way of adapting whatever 
material is at hand to their purpose; but the shape of the bones 
probably suggested their use and furnished a design which was 
reproduced in different materials. 

Type III is also made of the legbone of the deer, but without 
the bony handle formed by the projecting joint. The top part 
is cut off as in the Indian scraper (Plate XXII A a). The two 
sides are cut down, and the blade rounded. In some of the old 
specimens the symmetry attained is almost perfect, as may 
be noted in the specimen illustrated. The modern specimens 
are rough and ready affairs, evidently hacked out in camp, with- 
out much thought except for utility. As a general rule the 
specimens collected from the old graves and villages were much 
finer in form and workmanship than the present material. 


For scraping the fat, etc., off large skins, as the bear, and for 
splitting the thick hide of the walrus, the u"lu~ t or "woman's 

1 Cf. Boas, Eskimo of Baffin land and Hudson bay. Fig. 40 a, Bulletin of the American 
Museum of Natural History, vol. XV. p. 33. 
Ibid., Figures 41 f and h. 


knife" is used. This convenient utensil is put to a variety of uses; 
for cutting out skin clothing, for cutting and chopping up meat, 
and for scraping the hair off skins and also the dark coloured 
outer skin if "white" boots are desired. The skin scrapers 
described are specialized utensils, but the ulu is an all-round 
handy tool in the hands of an Eskimo woman. It appears in 
our modern civilization in the saddler's knife. 

The shape of the blade is semi-lunar, and may appear with 
or without a handle. It finds its prototype in a roughly trian- 
gular piece of slate or a thin slab of chipped stone with one side 
sharpened (Plate XXII Be). In the older specimens, 
particularly of the Central and Western Eskimo, the handle is set 
directly on to the blade. An evidently later type has an inter- 
vening piece, forming a T-shaped handle, which is riveted to the 
blade. The modern knife follows this shape (Plate XXI I B b). 
Mason has given us a very careful study of the ulu. 1 His divi- 
sions, however, appear to me to be more theoretical than practical. 
It is very hard to distinguish between the adoption of white 
material to native ends and strictly native work among the 
Eskimo. One should hesitate in modern collections to say that 
a stone-bladed knife was older than an iron-bladed one, or that 
a bone-hafted implement was more truly native than a wooden- 
hafted one, unless one took into account the location from which 
the implement came and the supply of material. The stone 
scrapers figured from Chesterfield inlet are quite recent. The 
wonderful conservatism of the Eskimo in material culture 
appears to apply to form rather than to material, as witness his 
use of copper, iron, stone, or tin for knife blades in various 
localities, and bone, ivory, wood, or deer horn for handles. As 
in the house of snow, stone, whalerib, or driftwood in different 
sections of the Eskimo world, adaption of the material at hand 
to a persistent pattern appears the underlying motive. 

The ulu is also found among the Indian tribes bordering on 
the Eskimo, as the Cree and Montagnais. 

While no one has disputed the Eskimo origin of the ulu, 
or woman's knife, considerable discussion has arisen as to whether 

1 O. T. Mason, The ulu or woman's knife of the Eskimo, Rep. U. S. National Museum, 


the "crooked knife" or man's knife of North America is an 
Eskimo or Indian invention, or whether it was not introduced 
at an early date by the whites. It is found in use among the 
Eskimo and the contiguous Indian tribes of Alaska and Canada, 
also on the northwest coast. It finds its prototype perhaps in 
the beaver-tooth knife of the Indians and survives in civilized 
culture in the farrier's knife. It is employed in the same way in 
all sections, i.e., held at right angles to the body and drawn 
toward the user. The Northwest Coast Indians have a knife 
with a shorter blade and heavier handle, which is held in both 
hands. An able and detailed description is given in Mason's 
paper on the man's knife. 1 

Among the Eskimo the man's knife is known as sa'<t>ik, 
which Murdoch says in Alaska is synonymous with "iron." In 
Bering strait tca w wik means a "foreign knife", likewise, "iron." 
Thus the introduction of the man's knife coincides in the west 
with the introduction of iron among the Eskimo, and is directly 
connected with contact with the whites. 

The man's knife is found among the Eskimo in two, possibly 
three, forms: (1), a crooked iron blade; (2), a slightly curved iron 
blade; and (3), a short curved or straight blade set at a slight 
angle. The knife in its first two forms (and the second may be 
only a variation of the first) is the instrument for whittling 
driftwood, or smoothing down sections already rough hewn with 
the adze; the third form is the graver's tool, and the slight angle 
at which it is set facilitates following with the eye the line as it is 
incised, and admits of greater pressure. The face of the handle, 
which may be of wood, deerhorn, or ivory, is cut away to admit 
the ball of the thumb against it, and in some western specimens 
grooves appear at the side of the handle for the encircling fingers. 
Examples of the graver's tool appear in Plate XXIII B c,d, and e 
and the form of the sa"<}>ik is illustrated in Plate XXIII A d and e. 
The latter specimens illustrate the curved rather than the crooked 
blade type. Some old specimens in the Museum from the 
Alaskan Eskimo have blades of slate (Plate XXIII A c). There is 
also a beaver- tooth knife in the same collection (Plate XXIII Ab). 

1 O. T. Mason, The man's knife among the North American Indians, Rep. U.S. National 
Museum, 1897. 


The form of the slate blades appears to be an imitation of the 
shape of the iron blade, but may antedate it. The beaver- 
tooth knife may have come from the Yukon country and have 
been acquired in trade from the Athabaskans. Beaver-tooth 
knives and an antler handle evidently adapted to a blade of this 
type were found in the archaeological material from the Iroquian 
Roebuck site in Ontario. 

In sharpening knives, harpoon points, and arrow heads, 
whetstones (si'dlit) are used. No particular choice of material 
is made; any smooth, close-grained stone picked up on the beach 
answering the purpose (Plate XXIII A f). Some of the small 
whetstones, however, are carefully shaped (Plate XXIII A a). 
It is worth noting here that old specimens of Eskimo knives and 
lance heads often appear with ground edge, indicating that the 
grinding process of sharpening is ancient with them as well as 
the use of chipping. 


The Eskimo bow drill (Plate XXIII B a and b) consists of 
three parts: (1), the bow (niuqtaq) ; (2), the shaft with its pointed 
drill (qai'vun); and (3), the mouthpiece (qi'ymiax) . The bow- 
string is placed around the shaft, pressure exerted on the mouth- 
piece, and the drill revolved by moving the bow. This handy 
little instrument is used for boring holes for the umiak and 
kayak frames, making holes in ivory and bone toggles and shoe- 
ing, and for starting a fire. In Labrador firestones of iron 
pyrites were more often used (Plate XXII Ac andd). The modern 
drill has a wooden shaft and mouthpiece, but the old-style drill 
had both these parts of bone. For the sharp point of the drill, 
a prong of deerhorn or a flake of quartz was used. 

The drill, together with the whetstone and flaker, were the 
tools used in making the old ivory, stone, and bone implements 
and weapons of the Eskimo. Flint implements were chipped off 
until the desired form was obtained, 1 but in slate and ivory material 
holes were bored with the drill and the piece fractured along the 
line thus made. This method gave a rough shape, which was 

> In this operation a bone tool was used and small pieces squeezed off. 


smoothed down with the whetstone. The file and sandpaper 
have replaced the whetstone in the modern process. Large 
implements and harpoon and lance points were sometimes 
chipped out of ivory tusks and whalebone with the adze or a 
heavy knife. The Eskimo seem to prefer even at the present 
time the old boring and splitting process to the use of modern 
saws, introduced by traders. This may be due to the materials 
that they work in, which are of such a nature as to lend them- 
selves favourably to the old process. 

No specimens were found in Labrador of the larger stone 
tools (hammers, adzes, etc.) common to Eskimo culture else- 
where, but no doubt the ancient Labrador Eskimo used them. 
The present culture has been modified perhaps more than any 
other Eskimo division by a long intercourse with the whites. 
When we consider the conditions at present, the southern 
branch almost entirely dissipated or absorbed by the white 
traders and settlers, and the northern branch surviving only under 
the careful nurture of the Moravians, it is not remarkable that 
we find only fragmentary evidences of the ancient culture. Our 
thanks are due to the Moravians for encouraging the Eskimo 
to continue using native food and clothing, but the complete 
reversal of a people's religious and social ideas cannot but have a 
disintegrating effect on their material culture. The Eskimo's 
penchant for imitation is a powerful cause here, as in Alaska, for 
the introduction of white methods of dress, housing, and furnish- 
ing. Consequently we find a hybrid culture on the east coast of 
Labrador an Eskimo culture adapted to white ideas. We 
do not strike a typical Eskimo group until we get into Hudson 
strait and bay. Even here the influence of the trader and mis- 
sionary is more or less felt, and is reflected in modern material 
for clothing and in civilized food. 


Among the Labrador Eskimo, as in Hudson bay, we find 
the Indian type (Plate XXIV i) of pipe in use, together with 
modern specimens furnished by the traders. Tobacco appears 
to be as indispensable here as among the Western Eskimo, but its 


introduction and use is evidently more recent. It was probably 
first obtained from the Hudson Bay and independent traders to 
the south and west, but may have come through Baffin island 
from Greenland. It was an article of trade with the early 
explorers and whalers. The Labrador Eskimo, together with 
the Eskimo of Hudson bay, use the Indian pipe and European 
tobacco, in distinction from the western group, composed of 
the Alaskan, Mackenzie, and Copper Eskimo, who use the 
eastern Asiatic pipe and Circassian leaf introduced through 
native Siberian traders at an early date. 

Tobacco is used mostly for smoking in eastern Labrador. 
A man is rarely seen chewing. Snuff is used by the old women. 
The pouch-shaped tobacco bag, described under "Clothing," is 
used for snuff. With the old-style pouch went a small horn or 
ivory spoon which was held to the nostril and the snuff inhaled 
while the other nostril was closed with the thumb. The form of 
the men's tobacco bag is given in the same section. With the 
men's pouch is a small ivory pin for cleaning out the pipe. 
Modern bags are decorated with beads in various designs. 


The needle-cases used by the Labrador Eskimo conform to 
the square-ended shape characteristic of the Eastern Eskimo. 
Some interesting variations are to be seen in the Museum in 
some old specimens from Labrador. In the oldest specimens 
one end is closed by an ivory decoration which forms a handle 
by which it can be tied to the belt (Plate XXIV a, c, and e). 
The interior is hollow, and filled with moss. Bone needles were 
placed in this soft bed and the other end closed with an ivory 
plug. In more modern specimens the needles are thrust in a 
sealskin thong running through the interior, which is pulled out, 
when needed, by an ivory button at the end of the thong. 1 In 
one of the specimens illustrated, this is carved into the form of a 
seal (Plate XXIV b). One needle case is rounded, approaching 
the cylindrical Alaskan shape (Plate XXIV d). 

1 The form of the catch on the other end of the thong is seen in Plate XXIV b, d, f. 


The decorative motive, the whale's tail, seen on (Plate 
XXIV b, f) two specimens, is also found in Alaska, but in 
tattooing rather than in ivory carving. 


A discussion of Eskimo art is usually confined to a des- 
cription of their etchings on ivory or an illustration of the little 
figures carved from ivory. But Eskimo art is something larger 
than this. It concerns itself not only with designs on ivory, but 
characteristic motives in the decoration of clothing, in tattooing, 
in fur and Ieather-appliqu6 work, and in basketry. The Eskimo- 
also reveal in the manufacture of tools and weapons an apprecia- 
tion of form and outline which will compare favourably with that 
of any of their Indian neighbours. 


The Labrador Eskimo do not etch their ivory with crude 
realistic figures like the Alaskan Eskimo, nor do they use the 
geometrical designs (the concentric circle, the alternate spur, 
etc.) common from Greenland to Alaska, but confine them- 
selves to a straight line or two accentuating the outline of the little 
ivory figures they delight in carving. These parallel lines are 
coloured in black or red. Dots are also used, but to imitate 
some feature of the model, not as a design. But in the form and 
finish of their ivory carving, the Labrador Eskimo excel the 
other eastern tribes and more nearly approach the ambitious 
work of the Alaskan Eskimo. Perhaps this is due, as in Alaska, 
to the introduction of better material for tools, as a result 
of early contact with the whites. 

A favourite design of the Labrador Eskimo is the komatik 
and dog- team, which is carried out with great fidelity of detail, 
even to the seals and snow-knife forming the komatik load 
(Plate XXV d and e). Another favourite is the hunter, seated 
in his kayak (Plate XXV a), or surrounded by his equipment 
(Plate XXVI), his gun (d), knife (a), cartridge-bag (f), and an 


extra pair of boots (e). These are all more or less modern 
types. The carving of animal forms is older. Of these, the 
seal (Plate XXVII A c), the whale (Plate XXVII A a), and the 
bear (Plate XXVII Bd) are most common. The white whale 
(Plate XXVII A f) and walrus (Plate XXVII A b) are more rare. 
The fox (Plate XXVII Ba) and the reindeer (Plate XXVI I Be) 
are quite unusual. The stone fish, illustrated in Plate XXVII A d, 
is of steatite (also used for lamps and kettles) which is used as 
well as ivory for carving, on the east coast. Plate XXV b is a 
modern ivory miniature of an Eskimo woman in the long-tailed 

Some carvings from the Central Eskimo illustrate how the 
Eskimo have caught in ivory the sense of action, as plainly 
as greater sculptors in marble. Plate XXVII B f and g are 
wolves on the trail. Plate XXVII B b is a polar bear, with up- 
raised foot on his prey, warning off intruders. Plate XXVII B e 
represents a musk-ox at bay; and Plate XXVII Ae a narwhal 


The Labrador Eskimo parallel nearly all their ivory work in 
wood carving. As the missionaries will tell you, walrus ivory 
is becoming scarce and the more plentiful material is used 
instead. Woodwork of this sort includes komatiks and dog- 
teams with their loads (Plate XIV B a), and even snow-houses, 
with the blocks and interior fittings carefully imitated. 


The reindeer frocks of the Labrador Eskimo women have 
handsome inserts of alternate light and dark fur on the edges of 
the flaps and in the sleeves (Plate XXVIII). The square and 
diamond-shaped fur appliqu work of the Alaskan Eskimo I 
found in only two specimens, a pair of mittens (Plate XXIX B a) 
and a tobacco bag (Plate XXIX B d). Beads are much used on 
fur for ornaments in floral designs, as in Plate XXIX B c. 
Another favourite bead design is the conventionalized figure in 
Plate XXIX B b. Modern embroidery on moccasins and 


mittens is done in silk, and on duffle in coloured yarns, the 
designs being nearly always floral with brilliant colours, and 
similar to modern work among the Montagnais and other Indian 
tribes of the Labrador interior. The Ieather-appliqu6 work, 
so highly developed among the Greenland Eskimo, finds a faint 

Figure 30. 

Tattooing on leg and forearm of woman, from southern 
Baffin island. 

reflection here in a few specimens. Plate XXIX A a shows the 
wavy line, used to decorate the flap of a tobacco pouch. Another 
specimen shows the diamond-shaped design, which is also seen 
in tattooing (see Figure 30, tattooing on forearm, Baffin island) 
and suggests a possible connexion between the two. Some 
women's duffle frocks from Cape Chidley had the simple cross 
design in leather as a decoration of the border. This design is 
said to indicate "flying birds," among East Greenlanders. 


Eskimo basketry is of the sewn coiled type, and is quite 
simple in construction. It consists of a "bunch of grass sewed 
in a continuous coil by a whip stitch over the bunch and under 


a few stems in the coil just beneath, the stitch looping under the 
stitch of the lower coil" (O. T. Mason). We find the Eskimo 
making baskets wherever there is a good supply of basket grass 
(i'vik), Ammophila arenaria, as at the mouth of the Yukon river, 
on the shores of Hudson bay, and on the east coast of Labrador. 
Most of the specimens are perfectly plain, and of the common 
"uncovered bandbox or ginger jar" shape (Mason), but certain 
specimens collected from Labrador offer simple designs, which 
have led me to consider them under art. 

The shape of the basketry in Labrador has been much 
influenced by contact with the whites, but the material and 
workmanship are Eskimo, and we find, besides the conventional 
"jar" shape, baskets patterned after kettles (Plate XXX d), 
bowls (Plate XXX c) , cups (Plate XXX b) , and dishes with covers 
and with handles (Plate XXXI B a and b). These are simply 
attempts to reproduce civilized forms in native ware. Other 
forms have a few characteristic Eskimo designs, which appear 
also in leather appliqu6 and ivory work. I refer to the border 
decoration, which consists of openwork, arranged in an angular 
or curved design. This type of design is featured in Mason's 
account of aboriginal American basketry in a specimen from the 
"Central Eskimo" (this should be Labrador Eskimo, because the 
specimen is from Davis inlet) in Plate 126. The openwork is 
produced "by wrapping the foundation with straw for one-half 
an inch and then sewing, as in ordinary coiled work, the angles 
to the coil below" (ibid., page 378). For a similar specimen from 
Hamilton inlet, Labrador, see Plate XXXI A b. The Labrador 
Eskimo use this method both in baskets, on the borders and 
bottoms, and in plaques. It offsets the plainness of the surface. 
A more complicated arrangement of the angular design is shown 
in basket (Plate XXXI A a) and plaque (Plate XXXI Ac). A 
very uncommon border is the margin of wavy lines, converging 
and diverging (Plate XXXI Ad). The same design appears 
in the leather applique of the East Greenlanders. 1 

It is worthy of note that we find an abundance of basketry 
work among the easternmost representatives of the Eskimo as 

1 See Thalbitzer, The Ammassalik Esktmo, p. 635. Copenhagen, 1914. 


well as in Alaska, with a few scattering specimens among the 
Central Eskimo to form a connecting link between. The broken 
appearance of the industry appears to be governed by local 
conditions and the presence of material. We find Alaskan 
baskets also with the angular openwork design, but I have seen 
none with a double curved line. Outside this variation in design, 
one could not tell, as far as appearance goes, the basketry of 
one section from the other. Of course, there is a large difference 
in individual workmanship, but some specimens obtained from 
Cape Chidley were as closely sewn and finely made as anything 
I have seen in Alaska. I incline to the opinion that the ability 
to make this simple coiled basketry is inherent among the 
Eskimo, and only needs contact with the proper material to 
bring it out. It may be an intrusive art, but more probably 
is characteristic of Eskimo culture at an earlier period when they 
dwelt farther inland. If it is a borrowed art, it has been so long 
adopted that its origin is forgotten. Its source would be hard to 
trace, as Eskimo basketry differs from that of any of the neigh- 
bouring Indian types. One would have to go as far south as 
the California area for comparisons. Its resemblance to the 
Hopi ware of the southwest is very marked. It has been sug- 
gested by Mason that the eastern basketry is an acculturation, 
derived from the whites, possibly the Norseman, as this style 
of coiled sewing is found in northern Europe. But, as we 
have seen, the eastern basketry is exactly the same as that in 
Alaska, which would point to a common racial origin. If the 
Norsemen made baskets in Greenland it is not reflected in the 
present Eskimo culture there. The Moravian missions have 
encouraged the making of basketry by the Eskimo as a native 
art, and furnished a market for it, as has Dr. Grenfell in his 
missionary work on the coast. 1 There is no other connexion 

1 Under date of October 28, 1915, Miss Jessie Luther, who has been connected for many 
years with the Industrial Department of the International Grenfell Association, writes me: 
"I think undoubtedly they are purely a native industry- I have been connected with the mis- 
sion ten years, nearly half the time Dr. Grenfell has been on the coast, and from the first have 
seen specimens of that kind of basket. I was told they came from farther north and during 
the past seven years I have gone down the Labrador coast as far as possible every summer 
and have found them at various places. The best have come from the neighbourhood of Hope- 
dale, Nain, and perhaps Okkak. I have also found some good ones around Hamilton inlet. 
I have not tried to regulate this branch of native work, it is so good in itself." [E. 


between it and any white influence in Labrador, except the 
secondary influence in form already described. 


Thalbitzer, in his excellent notes on the Amdrup ethnological 
collection from East Greenland (page 424), has made the sug- 
gestion that tattoo patterns on the Eskimo are in the main the 
same as those carved on ivory and sewn on skin. I had inde- 
pendently arrived at a similar conclusion from a study of Eskimo 
designs in general, i.e., that there is a fundamental unity between 
the conventional Eskimo designs on ivory, fur, and leather- 
applique work, and on the person, which vary slightly according 
to the material used and the shape of the surface. The dotted 
lines seen on the chins of Eskimo women (see Figure 31) and 
running from the mouth to the ear among old Alaskan men, 
are perhaps the simplest design on ivory. The Y-shaped design, 
common among the Central and Alaskan Eskimo in tattooing 1 
and on ivory, is seen in Figure 31 b on a woman from the east 
coast of Hudson bay. 

Perhaps a variation of this design is the whale's tail tattooed 
at the corner of the mouth of the men among the Alaskan and 
Asiatic Eskimo (see Figure 32 c), also seen on an old man from 
Ungava. It is also found as a conventional ornament on small 
articles in ivory among the Labrador and Greenland Eskimo 
(Plate XXI Vb). 

Figure 31 e approaches the crossed lines used as a filler of 
space in ivory work (see Plate XXVI a) . The other designs are 
self-evident. The concentric circle is found in tattooing on the 
arms of women in Bering strait. 2 The diamond-shaped design, 
tattooed on the arm of a southern Baffin Island woman (see 
Figure 30) is similar to a design in leather-appliqu work among 
the Central and Alaskan Eskimo. 

1 See Boas, The Eskimo of Baffin Land and Hudson's Bay, Fig. 158, p. 108. 
1 See G. B. Gordon, Notes on the western Eskimo, Plate X, Trans, of the Univ. of Penn., 
Arch. Dept., vol. 2. 


k v/~v 

Figure 31. Women's tattoo designs, a. and b. East coast of Hudson bay. 

c. Baffin island. d. Repulse bay. e. Chesterfield inlet. 

f. Vicinity of Bering strait, Alaska (from G. B. Gordon's Notes on the 

Western Eskimo, Plate IX, fig. 1). 


Figure 32. Men's and woman's tattoo designs. 

a. Man's design from Baffin island. b. Man's design from Ungava. 

C. Man's design from vicinity of Bering strait, Alaska (from G. B. Gordon's 

Notes on the Western Eskimo, Plate IX, figure 3). 

d. Woman's design from Nachvak. 

We have, then, several characteristic designs common to 
tattooing and work on ivory or skin: the dotted line, the Y- 
shaped design, the whale's tail, and the concentric circle. To this 
might be added the crossed lines, the diamond, also parallel lines 
either continuous or dotted (see Figures 31 and 32). 


The trifurcated line, "the raven's foot" of Nelson, seen in 
Figure 32 d, was found on an old woman from Nachvak, staying 
at Cape Chidley. This design is also found in Bering strait 
among the Alaskan and Asiatic Eskimo. 1 It is tattooed on the 
cheeks, forehead, or breast. Nelson interprets it as a totem 
mark and Bogoras as a protective design from the "kelet" 
(spirits). A story which the old woman mentioned above told 
me in connexion with this mark throws some light on its 
possible origin. She said that whenever an Eskimo approached 
the abode of Torngarsoak, "the great Torngak," who lives in a 
cave in the high mountains near Cape Chidley, one hung upon 
one's breast a raven's claw for protection. This may have led 
to the adoption of the "raven's foot" mark as a constant pro- 
tection against the Tornait. 


The social organization of the Eskimo may be said to be 
practically nil. The only ties are family life and certain taboos 
which have a religious sanction. Yet the force of public opinion 
is strongly felt and perhaps exerts a greater power than in more 
highly organized communities. 


We might define an Eskimo village as a sort of communistic 
settlement. Every one is free to do as he pleases, so long as he 
does not infringe on the general welfare of the people. When any 
one oversteps traditional bounds or makes himself obnoxious to 
the people, he is admonished by some of the old men or women. 
"Somebody speaks," they say. This usually so humiliates the 
offender, that no further punishment is necessary. If he con- 
tinues "bad-hearted," he is practically ostracized; he is not 
allowed to take any part in village affairs; he is forbidden to 
enter the iglus; no one will speak to him or have anything to do 
with him. This social death is the worst thing that can happen 

1 Cf. Nelson, Eskimo About Bering strait, 18th Annual Report B.A.E., p. 325, and Bogoras, 
The Chukchee, vol. VII, Jesup, North Pacific Expedition, p. 256. 


to an Eskimo. If he becomes morose and commits a murder, 
the men of the village get together and wait an opportunity to 
kill him. No concealment is made of the act, and it is not open 
to the usual blood revenge, being considered justifiable. 

In case of an ordinary murder, it is the duty of the next of 
kin to avenge it. Sometimes this act is delayed for many years, 
as in the case of a man leaving a small boy, who waits until he is 
old enough to avenge his parent. But the duty is never for- 
gotten. In the meantime the murderer may be treated by the 
relatives of the deceased as if nothing had happened: a situation 
which is unthinkable to us, but which does not conflict at all 
with Eskimo ideas. 

In the meantime the murderer is constantly on the watch for 
the avenger. He never knows when a knife will be thrust into 
him or when he may be shot or speared from behind. His eyes 
acquire a shifty look, which the Eskimo say is the mark of a 
murderer. Sometimes the avengers come to his own house, as 
in one case which came to my attention, and are treated as usual 
guests, until the day of reckoning comes. 

Generally speaking, murder is looked upon with horror by 
the Eskimo, and the spot where such a deed has been committed is 
shunned. But they do not scruple at taking life, when they feel 
justified by hard conditions or customs. Aged people who have 
outlived their usefulness and whose life is a burden both to 
themselves and their relatives are put to death by stabbing or 
strangulation. This is customarily done at the request of the 
individual concerned, but not always so. Aged people who are 
a hindrance on the trail are abandoned. Deformed children 
who exhibit some monstrosity which arouses the supernatural 
fears of the Eskimo are strangled at birth. Those who die a 
violent death are compensated by being translated to the highest 
heaven, which is located in Aurora Borealis. Here they spend 
their time with other shades of like fate, playing foot-ball with 
a walrus head. 

Under ordinary conditions the Eskimo live together in the 
greatest amity. In times of plenty they feast together, and in 
times of want the lucky hunters share their game with the less 


fortunate. Murder is committed only when jealousies, caused 
by some love affair, awaken a man's passions, or brooding over 
a perhaps unintended slight produces a sort of melancholia. 
But after a man has once committed a murder, he becomes blood- 
thirsty, and is apt to look for another victim, unless he is put 
out of the way by the community. Most of these killings have a 
psychological background. During the dark days of midwinter 
when the polar winds are blowing, the Eskimo are unable to hunt. 
They sit inside and gorge themselves with meat, and take little 
exercise. The congested body reacts on the nervous system and 
the usually amiable, good-natured native becomes sullen and 
moody. His gloomy surroundings add to his mental depression. 
He recalls old slights and grudges, and, in this abnormal con- 
dition, these often assume exaggerated proportions. It is under 
such conditions that most of the murders among them occur. 

The good nature and docility of the Eskimo have been 
emphasized, and justly; but this does not preclude their com- 
mitting as barbarous acts as any other savages, particularly 
when they are subjected to conditions which are favourable to 
the same. Many of their murders are extremely cold-blooded 
and unprovoked. The victim is never given a fair chance, but 
slain when off his guard. 


The Norsemen spoke of the "kings" of the Skraelings, and 
early writers (Hall and De Poincey) mentioned the peculiar dress 
of their "chiefs." They probably refer to the costume of the 
shaman with its special ornamentation. 

The Eskimo have never had any "chiefs" in the Indian 
sense of the word. They have had leaders, great hunters or 
enterprising shamans, who have been accorded their position by 
general appreciation of their worth. But the office has never 
carried any particular authority with it. 

In nearly every Eskimo village there is a headman, who 
entertains strangers and transacts the village business with them, 
but he has no authority outside his own family. The Alaskan 


Eskimo are said by Nelson to have chosen leaders for their 
tribal fights. When a shaman is also headman of a village, he is 
quite a powerful personage, but may be deposed or killed if he 
plays the tyrant. The office is not hereditary, unless the son of the 
headman shows equal merit. The office often passes from one 
family to another and entails the rather burdensome duty of 
feasting the villagers occasionally to keep them in good humor. 


When an Eskimo mother's time draws near, an old woman 
who handles the birth cases in the village will be seen leaving 
her home and taking her way to the sick one's iglu. She has in 
her hand a small sealskin thong, knotted and looped at the end. 
When she arrives at the prospective mother's home, the latter is 
made to kneel down on the floor of the iglu. The old woman ties 
the cord tightly around her waist. She then takes her position 
back of the kneeling woman, locks her two hands in front of the 
latter, and exerts a powerful downward pressure. 

During the operation a shaman may be assisting by singing 
and drumming to strengthen the mother, either at his home or in 
the house where the birth takes place. Some shamans even 
attempt to act as midwives, but their efforts usually end in 
disaster. Hence cases are usually left to the old women, who 
seem to have a good understanding of their work and are uni- 
formly successful. 

As soon as the babe is born, the old woman picks it up, 
blows in its mouth, and shakes it gently to make it cry, and as 
soon as a wail breaks forth, begins a song intended to make it a 
strong and powerful hunter, if a boy, or an industrious, fruitful 
woman, if a girl. The umbilical cord is cut, and the ends tied 
with sinew and carefully dusted with powdered charcoal, an 
operation which is repeated every day until it heals. The babe 
is then placed to the breast of the mother. If it refuses the breast 
a piece of seal fat is thrust into its mouth, with a stick across to 
prevent its choking the child. This furnishes nourishment and 
also acts as a necessary purgative. 


The placenta is carefully wrapped up and buried on the 
beach. The Eskimo are very careful that no dogs get hold of it. 
Probably their care is due to the same idea that impels them to 
preserve their hair and nail parings, a feeling that it is a part 
of themselves, which may be used for purposes of witchcraft. 

Eskimo mothers recover very quickly from the effects of 
childbirth. It is not unusual to see them out the same day, with 
the babe in their hood. Ordinarily the babe spends the first 
few days of its life sleeping in a warm reindeer sack. When it 
gets older, it is placed naked in the mother's hood, or, in very 
severe weather, partly clothed. When the babe can just begin 
to toddle around, a suit is made for him, which has the ends of 
the sleeves sewn up to keep his hands warm. The suit has a 
flap beneath and a bunch of moss for a diaper, which is renewed 
as needed. The babe spends its days happily tumbling on the 
floor of the iglu among the other children and the dogs, or is 
carried around outside in the hood of his older sister who is always 
very proud of her baby brother. The babe is the pet of the entire 
family and receives the attention of all visitors, old and young, 
with a gravity befitting the occasion. He early attains a knowl- 
edge of his power, and acquires a habit of speaking with authority 
which cannot be misunderstood. He is treated with great respect 
by his parents, and his smallest wishes gratified. 

The custom among the Eskimo of treating a child with all 
the deference due an adult, and asking his will or opinion with 
mature respect, is perhaps due to their idea of the namesake 
(at'itsi'ak) by which the child receives the name of the last 
person who has died in the village. 1 It does not matter if the 
child is of different sex, as names are not limited to sex among 
the Eskimo, although certain names are more apt to be given 
to one sex than the other. Often, when the child is born it 
receives several names from those recently deceased, and the 
correct name is left to a future decision. Among the East 
Greenland Eskimo the right name is discovered by divination, 
the diviner repeating the names of dead relatives until a pro- 
pitious sign occurs at a certain one. 2 Among the modern 

1 In Labrador a widower names his first child after his deceased wife. 
*Cf. Holm, The Angmagsolik Eskimo, p. 81. 


Labrador Eskimo, I was told that this is left to the decision 
of a living relative, who gives the child his name. Among the 
Alaskan Eskimo the choice is left to the community. The 
community settle on a name, or give the child when it grows up 
a nickname according to some characteristic, which invariably 
sticks better than the other name. I have known Eskimo 
nicknames such as "Broken," "Walrus," "Big Toe," etc., which 
were passed on to white men, who took up their quarters in 
houses which had been occupied by these characters. When 
an Eskimo falls sick or becomes old, he often changes his name 
to deceive the spirits and prolong his life. 


As the child grows up, it plays at the work of its elders. 
The girl helps her mother around the house, or plays with her 
dolls 1 and minature house and utensils. Small children are 
provided by admiring relatives with small ivory carvings of 
animals and birds, with which they play by the hour, arranging 
them for various plays and hunts. 

The boys early receive small harpoons and bows and arrows, 
and try their skill on small birds and floating pieces of wood. 
The sling is a favourite amusement in summer, when myriads of 
waterfowl visit the shores. When the "young ice" forms on the 
shore-line, the boys delight in making a minature boat out of 
one of the cakes and paddle around with a little oar, or leap from 
cake to cake, following the leader, or perform an impromptu 
song and dance on a shifting "pan." Although Eskimo children 
do not learn to swim, I have never heard of one of them being 
drowned. Their hardiness is something wonderful, perhaps due 
to letting them run around the iglu naked when young. I 
have seen them in the early spring, only a few weeks after the 
ice has broken up, running up and down the beach, and splashing 
and wading in the icy water, perfectly naked, and evidently 
having the times of their lives. 

1 Eskimo girls play their dolls are babies as white children do. They undress them and 
put them to bed at night, and dress them up again in the morning. During the day they crary 
them around in their hoods. 


Football is a favourite amusement with Eskimo of all ages. 
The football is a small round ball made of sealskin and stuffed 
with reindeer hair. In Labrador, as in Greenland, it is whipped 
over the ice with a thong loop attached to a wooden handle. 
It can be caught in the air and returned with terrific force with 
this instrument. It is said that the Eskimo did not like to play 
football with the Tunnit, because they were so strong that 
it was dangerous. Rink gives us several stories from Labrador 
and Greenland of the myth hero overcoming his opponents in 

The girls and women play handball with a larger and softer 
ball. A game which both sexes play is a sort of basket ball, in 
which the ball is thrown by the players on one side to each other, 
while the others endeavour to snatch the ball in the air. The 
women also play a sort of football "solitaire," in which they see 
how long they can keep the football in the air between their 
toes and hands, without moving from the spot. 

The children play tag, and exercise in running and the 
Eskimo "hop, skip, and jump." They engage in imitation of 
the pursuits of their elders, driving each other as dogs, stalking 
and shooting the one who is "it" as the deer or bear or seal, as the 
case may be, and generally enjoying themselves as children do in 
all parts of the world. In one thing the Eskimo child has the 
advantage over white children. He is never punished. On the 
other hand, I have never seen an Eskimo child disobey. The 
feeling between children and parents appears to be one of mutual 
respect and goodwill. The underlying psychology seems to be 
sound as far as a primitive race is concerned. It probably 
would not work as well with white children, who are accus- 
tomed to coercion and restraint. 


There is usually a great disparity in ages of the man and the 
girl of the first marriage, which may account for the low birth- 
rate among the Eskimo. When an Eskimo girl arrives at the 
age of twelve or fourteen, she begins to receive the attention of 
the unmarried hunters. About this time she ceases doing her 


hair up in two braids which hang down in front on her shoulders, 
and loops her hair in side plaits under her ears and fastens it at 
the back of her head. She leaves off the sexless square-cut 
bottom qo'lituk and appears in the gorgeous long- tailed, big- 
hooded affair affected by married women. Her chin is tattooed, 
and she appears shy and bashful, where she has been a noisy, 
romping child before. The Mission Eskimo women of Labrador, 
like those of Greenland, wear coloured ribbons as a distinguishing 
mark. The young girl has a pink ribbon, the married woman 
uses blue, and the widow, white. In Greenland an unmarried 
girl who has children wears a green ribbon, but no particular 
disgrace attaches to it. 

The new couple usually take up their abode with the girl's 
parents until they are able to set up a home for themselves. 
Sometimes an extra good hunter will supply food to both sides 
of the house, but usually he assists his wife's family. Separation 
is frequent among young couples, due to trifling disputes or 
incompatibility, and other partners are sought until a harmonious 
arrangement is effected, which usually lasts for life. Divorce 
is a simple matter; the husband tells the wife to "go outside," 
or she "runs away," taking her pots and household utensils and 
children, and going back to her father. Among the Labrador 
Eskimo, if the wife has any large property, as a tent or boat 
left her by her father or brothers, it is held in trust for her by 
one of her male relatives during her marriage. When she 
returns home, she has the use of it again. Separated couples 
often are reconciled and marry again. I knew one Eskimo's wife, 
who used to "run away" every spring, but was always taken back. 
An exchange of wives is not binding, although sometimes the new 
arrangement suits better and is allowed to stand. Some Eskimo 
beat their wives when they refuse to obey, but any cruelty on 
their part receives the disapproval of the community, and some- 
times the woman turns the tables on the man and beats him 


A good deal has been said and written about Eskimo im- 
morality, but it seems hardly fair to call them immoral. They 


are not immoral or moral, they are simply natural and governed 
by the conditions of their surroundings. The most necessary 
fact of married life with them is that they should have children. 
Future hunters are most desired, but girls who will prepare 
food and skins are not unwelcome, and the Eskimo are not 
very particular how they get them. A child, legitimate or 
illegitimate, is sure of a welcome, and of a home if he has none. 
This principle is not conventional, but it is honest, particularly 
to the child, and preferable to our ambiguous double standard. 

I have never seen any immodest behaviour on the part of 
the young women. On the contrary, they are usually so 
bashful that they will not speak above a whisper in the presence 
of a stranger. The older women, who have passed the age 
of child-bearing, give themselves more licence and bandy jokes 
back and forth with the greatest freedom, as they may safely 
do. There is the utmost openness in discussing matters of sex, 
even before the children. This does not mean that the Eskimo 
are vicious, but that they view these matters as a necessary 
part of the natural scheme of life, without any hypocrisy. 

The custom of exchanging wives is due to religious ideas, 1 
and the peculiar domestic economy of the Eskimo. For instance, 
an Eskimo may want to go on a reindeer hunt into the interior 
for the summer while his neighbour wishes to put up salmon. 
His own wife is an expert salmon curer, while his neighbour's 
wife is more skilful in preparing deerskins. An exchange is 
made for the season.* 

In Greenland and Labrador, where the husband has two 
wives, that number is necessary to care for the meat and skins 
which a good hunter provides. One of the knottiest problems 
which the Moravians had to solve was this question of polygamy. 
I understand that they wisely let it alone in the older generation, 
and sought to convert the new to more civilized ideas. 

The Eskimo wife, if she has children, holds a position of 
respect and authority in the home, She has few cares, and is 
inured to hard labour. She would not understand our civilized 

Cf. Bcas, The Central Eskimo, p. 605, 6th Report of the Bureau of American Ethnology. 
1 Cf. Murdoch, The Point Barrow Eskimo, p. 413, 9th Report of the Bureau of American 


pity for her. Her husband consults her before undertaking 
any important journey or trade, is an affectionate father, and a 
good provider. Husband and wife respect the position filled 
by each in the community, and there develops on this foundation 
a real affection, which is touching in an old couple. The hard 
conditions of Eskimo life do not tend to produce romances, 
but many a promising young couple are seen who are very fond 
of each other. The Eskimo are not so open in their display of 
conjugal affection as white people, but after one becomes better 
acquainted with them, one would not deny them this virtue. 

On the other hand, the Eskimo are very quick and ready 
in expressions of sympathy. They will sit down and cry for 
the misfortune of another as readily as for their own. Families 
in mourning are fed by the whole village. Those in misfortune 
never fail to receive a portion of the catch. The story of the 
poor orphan is the favourite theme of their stories, although, 
in actual life, the orphan and the widow have rather a hard 
time of it. But there is always someone to give them a little 
food or an old garment, so they manage to get along. The lot 
of the childless woman is the hardest. She cannot retain her 
husband's love, and if she is not divorced, has to bear the sight 
of another woman filling her place both in the family and the 
community. The aged are treated with great respect, and the 
word of the old men and women is final. The Eskimo say that 
they have lived a long time and understand things in general 
better. They also feel that in the aged is embodied the wisdom 
of their ancestors. This does not prevent them, however, from 
putting the old folks out of the way, when life has become a 
burden to them, but the act is usually done in accordance with 
the wishes of the persons concerned and is thought to be a proof 
of devotion. Pain and hardship are endured without complaint, 
and any good fortune is considered an excuse for feasting the 
entire village. An Eskimo never deserts his house-mates or 
friends, and his integrity can always be relied on. It is true 
that he tells little fibs in order to please, and enjoys deceiving 
as a joke, but when an Eskimo's word is seriously given, no hard- 
ship nor difficulty will hinder him from carrying out his part 
of the agreement. The Eskimo are slow to make up their 


minds, weighing each possibility carefully, but, their minds once 
made up, they pursue their object with great determination. 
They are not ungrateful for kindnesses, but their habit of con- 
sidering food and clothing as the right of everyone has led 
some explorers to call them ungrateful. Their ethical standard 
is largely a result of the conditions under which they live, in 
which each man must be able to rely on the word of his neighbour 
and give aid when needed, because he never knows when he may 
be in a like plight himself. 

The Eskimo is more open in his manner and moods than the 
Indian and reflects the passing thought in his attitude. As 
Cartwright wrote: "What in their minds they think, their 
faces show." They are very good-natured as a rule, but when 
angry, let their passions rage like children. They have this 
advantage over the Indian, however, that they do not harbour 
a grudge overnight, unless it is a serious one affecting their 
good name, of which they are very sensitive, or a case of blood- 
revenge. They have an innate sense of humour, which turns the 
most trifling circumstance into a joke, and a person with a 
cheerful disposition will get along much better with them than 
one who is inclined to be sober. They say that they dislike a 
"sour- face." They are impatient of small delays, preferring 
the present good to future welfare, as is seen in their custom of 
feasting while there is plenty and starving when there is none. 
However, they show great fortitude in bearing unusual hard- 
ships, and it is remarkable how cheerful their outlook is on a 
life which at best is a cold and hard one. 


The Eskimo have little fear of death itself, which the hunter 
braves many times a day on the shifting ice, nor do they express 
any particular emotion in putting an animal to death, or killing 
a man, for that matter. But they do have a superstitious 
fear of a corpse, owing to the malignant influence which it is 
supposed to exert, and are very much afraid of ghosts. They 
will never pass by one of their burying places at night. Their 
terror of the unknown is a very fruitful soil for the shaman 


to work upon, and partly explains the power which he exerts 
over them. 

When a shaman gives up his patient, everything is prepared 
for his burial. His grave clothes, consisting of the finest rein- 
deer, are cut out and made by the women, and the corpse is 
hastily dressed, sometimes before the breath has left the body. 

As soon as death is certain, the household sets up an un- 
earthly wailing, the women tearing their hair and beating their 
breasts, and otherwise giving vent to excessive grief. The vir- 
tues of the deceased are magnified and his faults forgotten. 
The villagers crowd in and add their lamentations to the general 
woe. In the evening a "head-lifting" is held, whereby the cause 
of the sickness is discovered. When the head becomes heavy 
it signifies an affirmative answer. At night a watch is kept 
over the corpse, two men sitting up together for company, 
as one might be overcome by the ghost. The body is taken 
out the next day through the window or a hole in the side of 
the house and buried. It is never taken out by the doorway, 
as the ghost might find its way back. It is a great misfortune 
to have anyone die unexpectedly in the house, as it contaminates 
everything in it. When an inmate is near his end, you will 
see his housemates removing all the household furniture and 


Eskimo graves in Labrador are found either on a hillside 
near the village, if the death occurred in winter, or near a camp- 
ing site on the seashore, if the death occurred in summer. Iso- 
lated graves are found on the tops of high hills. This place of 
burial is said to be reserved for distinguished headmen. The 
"old chief" at Cape Chidley was buried on top of a neighbouring 

Most old graves present the appearance of a cluttered 
heap of stones, but in a newly-made grave, the method of building 
an enclosing wall can be distinguished (Plate XXXV A). 

Having fixed upon a place of burial, stones are piled up in 
an oval or oblong wall 2 or 3 feet high, leaving just space enough 
for the body. The bottom of the space is lined with moss, 


and the body, wrapped in heavy winter deerskins, is placed on 
this soft bed. Large flat stones and, at a later date, pieces of 
wood, form a covering over the enclosure. The grave box 
is then covered with rocks to keep the body from wild beasts 
and birds. 

On top of the grave are laid the effects of the deceased, 
such as the lamp, kettle, and dishes of the woman, and the 
kayak, and weapons of the man. Some of the smaller utensils, 
as firestones (iron pyrites), toys, knives, needles, etc., are placed 
inside the graves. 

All the effects of the deceased are broken to liberate the 
spirit residing there, so that it may be useful to the shade of 
the owner. The clothes are torn; the dishes split; and holes 
bored in the soapstone lamps and kettles. 

In winter, when the stones are deep under snow, the bodies 
are simply laid out on the snow. The persons present at a 
burial must stop up the left nostril with reindeer moss to avert 
the contamination of the presence of the corpse. 



The game of cup and ball (ayayau'k} is played in Labrador 
as among the Central- Eskimo. A rabbit's skull or a cone- 
shaped piece of ivory is bored full of holes, and a peg of ivory, 
about 4 inches long, is attached to it by a thong. The game is 
to pierce the holes with the peg when the skull or ivory piece 
is swung on the end of the thong. In an old specimen in the 
Museum, the ivory piece is in the shape of a bear (Plate XXXII a). 
There is a definite order to the distribution of the holes in the 
ivory and the way in which they must be pierced. There is a 
triple line of holes on the abdomen and sides of the bear, but 
only a single line on the back and throat, and a single hole at 
the head and tail. During the first ten throws, the player 
may pierce any hole in the abdomen or sides. Beginning at 
the hole in front (in the head) he next must pierce the line from 
the head to the tail. If he misses more than once, he has to give 


place to another player. After successfully taking the holes in 
order, he may continue piercing any hole until he misses one. 

A game (tingmia"yax) (Plate XXXII c) similar to dice is 
played with ivory images of birds. There are fifteen to eighteen 
figures used in the game. Small images of men and women 
are also used. The players sit around a dressed sealskin. The 
images are taken in the hand, shaken, and thrown up. In falling, 
those that stand upright belong to the player. The one who suc- 
ceeds in getting the greatest number is declared the winner. 

The Labrador Eskimo also play a game with small ivory 
pieces covered with dots in varying patterns (Plate XXXII b), 
which appears to be an adaptation of dominoes (amazua"lat) . 
The following description of the game is taken from Turner : x 

"Two or more persons, according to the number of pieces in 
the set, sit down and pile the pieces before them. One of the 
players mixes the pieces together in plain view of the others. 
When this is done he calls to them to take the pieces. Each 
person endeavours to obtain a half or third of the number 
if there are two or three players. The one who mixed up the 
pieces lays down a piece and calls his opponent to match it with 
a piece having a similar design. If this cannot be done by any 
of the players, the first has to match it and the game continues 
until one of the persons has exhausted the pieces taken by him. 
The pieces are designed in pairs, having names such as Kamiu'tik 
(sled) , Kaiak (canoe) , Kale'sak (navel) , A'mazut (many) , Atau'sik 
(one), Ma'kok (two), Pingasut (three), Sita'mfit (four), and 
Ta'limut (five). Each of the names above must be matched 
with a piece of similar kind, although the other end of the piece 
may be of a different design. A Kamutik may be matched 
with an Amazut if the latter has not a line or bar cut across it; 
if it has the bar it must be matched with an Amazut." 

CAT'S CRADLE (ayaYa"poq). 

I found on inquiry that the game of cat's cradle was known 
among the Labrador Eskimo, and played by the adults during 
the dark days of winter for amusement. I was unable to get 

i Ethnology of th* Uneava district, pp. 257, 258. 


any specimens in summer, but informants told me that the 
Labrador Eskimo made the characteristic forms the deer, 
the dog, the sledge, etc., which are found among the western and 
central Eskimo. The game is a favourite with the women 
and used to amuse the children. 


Specimens of dolls, the chief playthings of the Eskimo 
girls, were obtained from Labrador, Baffin island, and Chester- 
field inlet (Plate XXXIII). They have an extra ethnological 
value in reflecting in miniature the dress of the district from 
which they come. Little Eskimo girls "keep house" with them 
in little snow iglus in winter or in old tent circles in summer, 
much as their civilized sisters would do. I saw in an old summer 
camp in Hudson bay such a playhouse with its little fire-place 
and lamp of brightly coloured pebbles and bed of moss, mute 
witness to the active little minds and hands of bygone Eskimo 


A characteristic specimen of an Eskimo "fiddle" was ob- 
tained on this trip. It consists of a rude box, with a square 
hole in the top, three sinew strings with bridge and tail-piece, 
and a short bow with a whalebone strip for hair. It must be 
a rude imitation of "fiddles" seen on whaling ships, as the 
drum is the only indigenous musical instrument of the Eskimo. 
Most Eskimo fiddles have only one string. When I asked an 
Eskimo musician once about this he said, "One string is plenty 
for an Eskimo song." Anyone who understands the range of 
the Eskimo scale will appreciate the answer. 

The Eskimo have a keen appreciation of music and not 
unpleasant voices, which have been turned to account by the 
Moravian missionaries. One is considerably surprised in step- 
ping into a mission service to hear the Eskimo congregation 
singing their native hymns to Bach's grand old chorals, in perfect 
harmony and with deep feeling and evident emotion. The men 
have deep, rich bass voices, but some of the women's voices 


are rather shrill. Nathaniel, the choir leader at Nain, has 
composed an anthem in four parts, showing that the Eskimo 
are not incapable of constructive work in music. The Moravian 
Mission Eskimo also show an aptitude for civilized musical 
instruments, and there is a well balanced band at both Nain 
and Okkak. The organist, Jeremias, at Nain, the Moravian 
headquarters, is a musician of no mean ability. He can play 
classical selections on the pipe organ and any band instrument. 
The Eskimo have a good ear for music, and will catch an air 
after it has been sung once or twice to them, and repeat it with 
great gusto and evident feeling for the rhythm. Rhythm is 
the foundation of their native drum and dance songs, and it is 
not so remarkable that they excel in it, as it is that they are 
able to catch the entirely foreign time of the complicated music 
of civilization. 

The Eskimo music differs from civilized harmony in having 
a pentatonic scale, and in the constant reiteration of a note 
or phrase, particularly in their a-ya-aya-ya chorus. A drop of 
an octave or a shift into another key is not uncommon in the 
same song. The time is 2-4, formed on the double drum beat, 
which the voice accentuates in the music. The body, with odd 
jerking of the arms and stamping of the feet, answers the roll 
of the drums in the dance. The women stand with feet together 
and sway the body from the hips, and wave their hands. (In 
some sections, as in north Greenland, the men also stand with 
fixed feet while dancing and singing.) The song is delivered 
at the top of the voice, the idea seeming to be that the more 
noise the better is the music. The men's songs are interspersed 
with shouts. The women have soft cradle-songs which they sing 
to the babies in the hood while they are swaying them to sleep. 
These are more melodious than the drum-songs. Among the 
Alaskan Eskimo the young girls have a curious type of song 
which they perform among themselves as a sort of game or 
amusement. It is called "throat-singing" and consists of a series 
of guttural ejaculations, which they attribute to the Raven. 
Incantations are chanted ; the text at the end of this volume is 
an illustration. In story-telling, a man often stops to sing a 
short phrase or song, as delivered by a character in the legend. 


As Mena'dlook an Alaskan Eskimo once told me, "The Eskimo 
have many songs. They have songs to make the wind blow, 
songs to make the seals come, songs to dance by, songs for play, 
songs to keep off the spirits songs to make their hearts strong." 
Songs are property among them, and the originators or old men 
who have learned appropriate songs sell them on ceremonial 

Until they have been educated to it and understand the 
intricacies of modern music, Eskimos as a rule do not like civilized 
music. They say that there are too many notes, too much 
noise, that the time is confusing, and that they prefer the simple 
rhythm of their native songs. Of the "white man's songs," 
they like best the old-style hymns. 



The religious ideas of the Labrador Eskimo appear to be 
intermediate between those of the Greenland and Central 
Eskimo, as might be expected from their geographical situation. 
Influences have flowed in from both sides which have given rise 
to conflicting ideas concerning the attributes and location of 
their deities, but the main features are clear. 

The Labrador Eskimo have two main deities: a female 
deity Supergu'ksoak who presides over the land animals, espec- 
ially the reindeer, and a male deity Tornga'rsoak, who presides 
over the sea animals. The male deity is the husband of the 
female deity. A similar arrangement was found by Captain 
Comer on the west coast of Hudson bay 1 and also occurs in 
Bering strait among the Island and Asiatic Eskimo. 2 

The legend concerning these two deities, as given by an 
Eskimo named At'u'nga to the early Moravian Brethren, is as 
follows : 

"In the inland lives an old woman, who presides over the 
land animals, especially the reindeer. She will always assist 

1 See Boaa. Eskimo of Baffin land and Hudson bay, Bui. A.M.N.H., vol. XV, p. 145. 
* See Bogoras, The Chukchee, Jemip North Pacific Expedition, vol. VII, pp. 317, 318. 


the Innuit in their pursuit of game, when she is appealed to. 
Through their connexion with her, the angekut are able to 
draw the reindeer." 1 

The old woman does not live alone, but there are many 
more with her, who spend their time in hunting. (The Eskimo 
told the early missionaries that when they died, their souls 
would go "into the country and hunt reindeer"; it is supposed, 
then, that the old woman is surrounded by the souls of departed 
Eskimo, who spend their time in hunting.) 

The old woman's name is Supergu'ksoak. 

Her husband is Tornga'rsoak. He lives in the water, and 
all creatures that live in the water are subject to him. It is he 
to whom the Labrador Eskimo appeal when in search of whales 
or seals. 

Through their relation to Supergu'ksoak, the angekut 
(shamans) are able to draw the reindeer. A very interesting 
description of this ceremony, performed through the medium of 
a doll fetish, 2 is given by Turner (Ethnology of the Ungava District, 
page 197). The control of the reindeer, however, is assigned 
by the Ungava Eskimo, according to Turner, to Tornga'rsoak. 
He says: 

"A great spirit controls the reindeer. He dwells in a huge 
cavern near the end of Cape Chidley. He obtains and controls 
the spirit of every deer which is slain or dies, and it depends 
on his good will whether the people shall obtain future supplies. 
The form of the spirit is that of a huge white bear." 

The Eskimo of the east coast recognize the same deity in 
Tornga'rsoak or Tunga'rsuq. 8 He lives in a cave in the great 
black mountains at the northern extremity of the peninsula, 
which they call the Tornga'it, or Spirit mountains. The scenery 
here is wild and impressive. Tornga'rsoak takes the form of a 

1 Both of my informants approved the legend, and added the additional information that 
when the old woman wished to call the reindeer, she would chant "kai'te, kai'te, ka'^uqtuya," 
"Come, come, I am hungry." 

1 In Alaska this act of conjuring has been expanded Into a ceremony, called the Doll 
Festival or Deer Festival (see Nelson, The Eskimo about Bering Strait, p. 494). In this festival 
the location of the deer is divined by the presence of a reindeer hair on the doll at the 
conclusion of the ceremony. 

* South Labrador dialect. 


huge white bear when he appears to angekok novices. He 
devours them limb for limb, and then spews them out again, 
when they become endowed with superhuman power. It will 
be noticed that Turner says that Tornga'rsoak controls the spirits 
of every deer which is "slain or dies," implying that he is master 
of the spirit world rather than the living deer, which does not 
conflict with the idea that Supergu'ksoak controls the latter. 
Tornga'rsoak also controls the future supply. Consequently 
none of the foetal deer are allowed to be eaten by dogs (Turner, 
ibid., page 201). The same idea occurs at Point Barrow, Alaska. 1 
In Alaska the idea of the connexion of the shade of the animal 
with the future supply is marked and finds expression in the 
religious ceremonies. 2 The belief in Sedna, prominent among 
the Baffin-islanders, is not unknown in northern Labrador. 
At Cape Chidley, an Eskimo informant spoke of an old woman 
whose home was at the bottom of the sea. Sometimes she 
came up to breathe across the strait, near the shores of Resolution 
island (Tutjarluk). She controls everything that swims in 
the sea; the fish, the seals, and especially the polar bear. She 
must be appeased, else she would drive the polar bears north- 
ward to Tutjarluk (Resolution island) where there are no hunters, 
or she might send a shark to eat their seals and cut up their nets, 
or make the codfish refuse to bite. The Cape Chidley Eskimo 
used to throw their broken knives, worn-out harpoon-heads, 
and pieces of meat and bone into the sea as an offering to the 
old woman. 

The Cape Chidley (Killinek) people were evidently much 
more afraid of Tornga'rsoak than the Old-woman-who-lived-in- 
the-sea, and, whenever anything went wrong, the angekut and 
sometimes a chosen body of men would visit the cave where 
Tornga'rsoak was thought to reside and make due offerings of 
reindeer fat and tobacco. 

It appears to me that the belief of the original stock of 
Eskimo must have included both a male and female deity, 
holding sway over the land and sea-animals. The Sedna 

1 See Murdoch, The Point Barrow Eskimo, 9th Annual Rep. B.A.E., Washington, p. 267 
See Hawkes, The Inviting-In Feast of the Alaskan Eskimo, Memoir 45, Anthropological 
Series No. 3, Geological Survey, Canada, p. 3. 


legend is found in practically every Eskimo tribe, while the 
belief in Tornga'rsoak as the chief or most dreaded spirit is 
found in Greenland and Labrador, and in different forms on 
the west coast of Hudson bay and in Bering strait. The belief 
of the male deity appears to have been intensified in the eastern 
regions, and of the female deity in the central. In the west, 
the old religion has broken down and new ideas have been adop- 
ted by the Alaskan Eskimo from the Indians of the northwest 
coast and by the Asiatic Eskimo from the Chukchee. Yet 
Eskimo conservatism is such that the Eskimo of Indian point 
(Siberia) still sacrifice to the Old Woman (Nulirah) of the Sea, 
and the island Eskimo of Bering strait to Kacak, the male 
deity corresponding to Tornga'rsoak. 


The Eskimo believe that not only all animals but also any 
prominent physiographical feature, such as a rock, point, cove, 
or mountain, is inhabited by a spiritual counterpart, the inua, 
the genius or thinking spirit of the object or spot. This is the 
third person possessive form of inuk, man, and means literally 
"its man," which perhaps expresses the idea as well as it can be 
explained. This belief is illustrated in the dance masks of the 
Alaska Eskimo, which are often made double, with the outer 
portion showing the animal form and the inner mask the inua. 
The illusion is completed by having the outer mask hinged, 
so that the inua can be revealed at will. The idea is also prom- 
inent in Alaskan mythology, where animals change from their 
own shape to that of men by the simple expedient of pushing 
up their beaks or muzzles. 

There is another class of spirits, sometimes disembodied, 
sometimes associated with strange and terrifying forms, more 
or less under the control of the shamans. These are called the 
Tornait 1 ; singular, Torngak (northern Labrador and Baffin 
island), Tungak (Ungava and southern Labrador), Tungak 
(Alaska), which perhaps originally meant nothing more than 
"spirit," but in missionary accounts becomes "devil." The 
Tornait are malignant spirits who are to be propitiated. 

1 Tungat, South Labrador. 


From them the shaman in Alaska derives his name, the 
tuyra'lik or "possessor of a spirit." Usually he possesses 
several spirit familiars. 

The supreme control of all the Tornait is assigned to Tor- 
narsuq in Baffin island; Tornga'rsoak in northern Labrador, 
"the great To'rngak." I cannot agree with Turner's suggestion 
that "this Tungak is nothing more or less than Death, which 
ever seeks to torment and harass the lives of people that their 
spirits may go to dwell with him." 1 The legend which he 
relates of Tornga'rsoak's origin, i.e., that he was once a fond 
father who was changed by the death of his children to a vicious 
spirit preying on all mankind, is also found in Alaska, where the 
additional information is given that the shamans, through 
their magic art, got him into their power and bound him, so 
that he could do no further harm (cf. Nelson, The Eskimo about 
Bering strait, page 481). 

For this reason the dead are bound. In this case the 
Tornait represent the malignant influence of the dead during 
the three days while they still linger on earth before they take 
their departure to the spirit world, but this is only one of the 
phases of their appearance. During this period no work may 
be done with a sharp-edged instrument for fear of wounding 
a wandering spirit and inviting its anger. 


The angekut are the accredited mediators between the 
Eskimo and the spirit world which surrounds them. Without 
their assistance in dealing with such powerful influences, the 
Eskimo believe they would be undone. Consequently the 
angekut exercise a great power over their people. The angekok 
combines in one the three offices of priest, prophet, and physician. 
He attains his power and knowledge of the spirit world only 
after a long and arduous apprenticeship. 

When an Eskimo feels that he has been called to be an 
angekok, through some mysterious event which has happened 
to him, or a chance meeting with some supernatural being, he 

1 Ethnology of the Ungara district, llth Annual Report B.A.E., p. 194. 


retires to a lonely place, where for a space of time he lives the life 
of a hermit, praying and fasting until his familiar spirit appears. 
Torngar'soak appears in the form of a great white bear and de- 
vours the aspirant limb for limb. Other Tornait appear in 
different but no less terrible forms. An angekok novice, Angu'- 
kvaluk, thus described the terror of the acolyte to Jens Haven, 
the famous Moravian missionary. 1 

"My parents told me that their familiar spirit, or Torngak, 
lived in the water. If I wished to consult him, I must call upon 
him as the spirit of my parents to come forth out of the water, 
and must remember this token, that I should observe a vapour 
ascending; soon after this spirit would appear and grant what I 

"Some years ago, when my little brother was ill, I tried this 
method for the first time, and called upon the Torngak, when I 
really thought I perceived a thin vapour rising, and shortly 
after, the appearance of a man in a watery habit stood before me. 

"I was filled with horror; my whole body shook with fear, 
and I covered my face with my hands." 

Having passed through this ordeal, the apprentice receives 
a portion of power and the promise of future assistance from his 
familiar spirit. He returns to the village and relates his adven- 
tures. His power is soon put to the test. A stance is held the 
first favourable evening. Singing and shouting and beating 
his drum, he quickly works himself up into a frenzy. The ap- 
pearance of his familiar spirit and its possession of him is heralded 
by frightful cries and the redoubled beating of the drum. At 
this point the demeanour and speech of the labouring angekok 
entirely changes. The method of a famous early Labrador 
Eskimo conjurer, Seguilak, 2 is described in Jens Haven's Diary: 

"Falling into an ecstasy, he first sang to his wives, then 
muttering some unintelligible jargon, made strange gestures, 
blew and foamed at the mouth, twisted his limbs and body 
together, as if convulsed, throwing himself into every possible 

1 During their long stay on the Labrador coast, the Moravian Missionaries have kept a 
constant diary. The following quotations are from that of Jens Haven, the first and most 
famous of the early Labrador missionaries. 

1 Seguilak was a brother-in-law of the famous Mikak, the Eskimo woman who befriended 
the first Moravian missionaries. 

130 ; 

posture. At intervals he would emit the most frightful shrieks, 
then placing his hand on the missionary's face he would groan 
out, 'Now is my Torngak come!' ' 

"At such times," the missionary adds, "the Eskimo present 
would lie flat upon their faces, as if they were dead men." 

While the angekok is possessed by the spirit, advantage is 
taken of his trance-like condition to ask him questions. The 
response of a female angekok, Millak, is further described by 
Jens Haven: 

"... .She began, with deep sighs and groans, to invoke the 
Torngak, till at length her loud, shrill voice made the house 
tremble. After a brief silence she shouted aloud to me and then 
another what the Torngak had told her in reply to their questions. 
If the replies were unfavourable, the Torngak was again invoked, 
until the results were satisfactory." 

Needless to say, at such times the angekok takes advantage 
of his connexion with the torngak to confound his enemies in his 
responses. But, on the whole, the angekok does not use his 
power for harm. 

The concluding ceremony of driving the torngak out of the 
house, which is a common practice among the Asiatic Eskimo, 
was also the finale of the Labrador shaman's performance. 

"Then suddenly a terrific noise was heard, like the report 
of a gun apparently caused by striking a sealskin stretched 
tightly on a hoop and hung up for the purpose. 1 She then 
chased the Torngak through the house with a stick, striking 
furiously right and left, stamping with her feet, and uttering 
frightful sounds." 

The work of the angekok is not limited to such public 
exhibitions, but also includes doctoring the sick, officiating at 
ceremonials, determining the presence of game, foretelling or 
changing the weather, making amulets, instructing novices in 
his art, 2 etc. 

1 The Labrador Eskimo of the east coast have not used the drum for several generations, 
although they still understand the construction of it. It is one of many old customs which have 
passed away. 

8 Young shamans usually attach themselves to an older angekok for several years, until 
they become proficient. 


In sickness, the sufferer is thought to be possessed by an evil 
spirit, and it is the business of the angekok to drive it out of him 
with the assistance of his powerful familiar spirits. The method 
is much the same as observed in the seances, but usually accom- 
panied by a thumping of the individual over the diseased part, 
or blistering it by sucking out the trouble through a hollow tube. 
Quite often the faith of the patient makes him whole. The 
doctor always takes his payment in advance, but is obliged to 
relinquish it in case of failure. The angekok is always ready with 
some trifling excuse for a miscarriage of his art, which never fails 
to convince the Eskimo. 

The performances of the shaman include not only the seances 
described, but some very clever ventriloquistic work and not 
unskilful juggling. This art is acquired by the novice after a 
long training as an assistant to the angekok. On the other hand, 
the assistant is sometimes very useful to the angekok in helping 
him out of difficulties. During my stay in an Alaskan village, 
an angekok had himself hanged to gain greater power. His 
relatives despaired of his recovery, but his assistant revived him. 
Inasmuch as foreign spirits are commonly supposed to possess 
greater virtues, the spirits of the angekok often talk in a foreign 
tongue. (I am not referring to the angekok language, which is 
made up of descriptive and obsolete Eskimo words.) I heard 
an Alaskan shaman once whose tungak was supposed to be talking 
a dialect of Asiatic Eskimo, but an Eskimo friend in the audience 
who came from that district afterwards told me that the spirit 
"talked it very badly." Among the Western Eskimo, a shaman 
has a set of masks representing his spirit familiars, and he puts 
them on as they appear, changing his voice and attitude for each. 
This does not seem to be the case among the Labrador Eskimo 
angekut, who do not seem to aspire to more than one to'rngak. 
Among the Alaskan Eskimo the soul of the sick who die under his 
ministrations is thought to be acquired by the shaman and 
compelled to serve him with his other familiar spirits. I heard 
of no such belief among the Labrador Eskimo. 

Some of the most common sleight of hand tricks of the 
angekok are: allowing themselves to be bound and getting free, 
stabbing themselves with knives (when a concealed bladder 



filled with blood comes in handy) ; grinding up a bead and making 
it appear whole again; squeezing blood out of a handful of snow; 
and other tricks which appear crude to a white man but wonderful 
to an Eskimo. 


Modern representatives of the old angekok have degenerated 
into mere conjurers. One of the last of these was Toma'suk, a 
southern Labrador Eskimo, who lived in the vicinity of Sandwich 
bay. Toma'suk used to oblige his friends by calling up the 
spirits of the dead whenever they wished to inquire regarding 
the welfare of the departed or the whereabouts of absent rela- 
tives at sea. 

He would blindfold the questioner, and rap three times on 
the ground with a stick. On the third rap, a spirit would come 
up, of whom he would make the inquiry desired. After the 
answer had been obtained, the spirit would be sent back by 
rapping three times on the ground again. This species of 
conjuring was known as kilu'xin, "conjuring with a stick." 

I have seen a somewhat similar method used by an Alaskan 
angekok. He put on a raincoat, as the Alaskan and Asiatic 
shamans invariably do, as it is supposed to be the dress worn 
by Ka'cak, the Bering Strait male deity, and called up the spirit 
of the deceased's grandfather. The Western Eskimo believe 
that the spirit arises from the world beneath the earth and comes 
up through the body of the shaman. By a little clever ventrilo- 
quistic work the shaman carried on quite a conversation with the 
shade. After the information desired had been elicited, it was 
sent back to its abode beneath by a stamp of the foot. 

The Moravians report that some harmless old fellows among 
the Mission Eskimo have a reputation for "rubbing" the pain 
away from an affected part. The Eskimo believe that when 
a part is affected, it is "broken," and the "doctors" mend it by 
certain mysterious manipulations. I could not get any infor- 
mation as to what they were like. 

An ancient and different form of divining is described by 
Jens Haven : 


"An Eskimo stretched himself on his back on the floor; one 
of his bows was laid across his legs and tied fast to his left leg; a 
woman sat on his right side and laid his right leg over his left, by 
which the bow and string were moved. The moving of the 
string was regarded as an affirmative answer." 


When in northern Labrador a man kills a white whale, 
he must sleep the night following with his head off the platform. 
For this purpose a band is passed around his head, and fastened 
by a sealskin thong to the roof above the sleeping platform. Is 
this a relic of the ancient ceremony of head-lifting ? The in- 
formation came from the "heathen" tribe of Nachvak. 


Most of the taboos among the Eskimo have reference to the 
absolute separation of sea and land foods or to the avoidance by 
the hunter of catamenial contamination, which would render him 
visible to game. The former have mainly to do with the deer and 
the seal, the meat of which must not be eaten together, but has 
been further specialized in Labrador so as to separate the walrus 
from the seal. The whale is included in the taboo against 
mixing the food of sea and land animals, which is extended to 
include any parts of the two animals, or even a weapon wrapped 
with sinew. The infringement of the food taboos are punished 
with severity. An informant told me about a young Eskimo 
girl who lived at George river (Ungava), who persisted in eating 
deer meat and seal meat together. She was banished from her 
village in the dead of winter. She was found in the interior, 
in a famishing condition, by another tribe. They allowed her 
to live with them, but she never visited her native home, nor 
would she have been allowed to do so. 

The food taboos are as follows: 

Reindeer meat and seal meat must never be cooked or eaten 

This taboo also applies to seal meat and walrus meat (east 
coast of Labrador). 


Any weapon bound with sinew must not be used on a whale. 
Whaling lances and blubber hooks must be bound with sealskin 

Weapons with a rotten shaft must not be used on the whale. 
No rotten wood must be brought in contact with a whale. 

In killing seals, if the eyeball is cut, it will blind the other 
seals, and ensure their easy capture. 

When the seal is cut up, if the tip of the heart and liver 
are thrown back into the water, more seals will come in future 
to the hunter. 

During the whale hunt, the women and children must 
remain indoors silent and motionless while the men are out. 
Once at Nachvak, while the men were out whaling and the 
women and children were gathered inside the iglu, a mouse ran 
across the iglu, and a child saw it and ran after it. Consequently 
a whale, which the men had struck, was lost. 

Of the second class of taboos, contamination, I secured the 
following : 

During her catamenial period, a woman must never step over 
a kayak, but always go around. The evil influence believed to 
emanate from her condition would cause the game to avoid 
the kayak. She must wear the hind flap of her qo'lituk stitched 
to the back of the garment (to indicate her condition to the 
hunters). Her left hand must remain ungloved, and the first 
two joints of her right hand finger (representing the cut-off 
joints of Sedna's hand) must also be bared. She must not touch 
certain foods and skins. 

The left nostril must be stopped with reindeer moss by 
those burying a corpse to avoid the contaminating influence of 
the dead. 

Other customs and ideas of a more miscellaneous character 

The knife with which bear meat is eaten must be bitten 
before the owner starts to eat. 

After anyone dies, no work must be done for three days. 
During this period no sharp-edged instrument may be used 
which might injure the wandering ghost. 


The twitching of the eyelids (ci'akuk) is said to indicate 
that a stranger is coming. 

On long trips, if one wears a pair of tiny boots on the back 
of the a"tige, the owner's boots will not wear out. 

In making a soapstone lamp or kettle, if a small model is 
made, the large lamp or kettle will last as long as the little model 
does not crack nor break. 

Walrus must be cut up at the ice edge (se'n'w}. 

A young hunter must share his first seal with everyone in the 

The Eskimo have certain ideas, incipient proverbs, as it were 
which crystallize on occasion into speech. One of these is that 
a person who encounters considerable hardship in life will live 
a long life, perhaps through the training itself, perhaps as a 
recompense. I have heard it expressed as follows in contrary 
weather, "He who encounters head winds will live a long life." 

Another idea is that those who are "wished" a long life will 
live to be very old. 

A child who does not obey his parents willingly, will make 
a "bad-hearted" man, i.e., a murderer. 

A man who catches a strangely marked animal in his traps 
will soon die. 

A man who boasts will soon be made ashamed. A bully 
will always meet his match. 


There appears to be among the Labrador Eskimo the idea 
that not only the shaman, but every person, has his individual 
familiar spirit, 1 whose assistance is sought in hunting and other 
ventures. This is embodied in the material form of a doll or 
doll's head, which is carried somewhere about the person, often 
around the neck. When an Eskimo has a long streak of bad 
luck, he attributes it to his fetish and tries to get rid of it by passing 
it along to someone else. This must be done without the knowl- 
edge of the recipient, else it will be of no avail. I procured two 

1 1 have used this term instead of "guardian spirit" because the idea appears to be different 
from that commonly given the latter. 


of these specimens, which were found by a trader concealed in a 
bundle of skins which he had bought from an Eskimo (Plate 
XXXIV b and c). 

At one time a whale fetish with a hole in the middle, so that 
it could be worn around the neck, was given me surreptitiously 
by an Alaskan Eskimo. This particular fetish is worn by the 
harpooner of a whaling crew. He had just lost a whale, and 
wanted to get rid of his bad luck. 

It should be noted here that the assistance of the individual 
spirit is given grudgingly, and often the owner has to chastise it 
by stripping the fetish of its garments, subjecting it to blows, 
and by other forceful means until it grants good fortune again. 
If it proves obstinate, it is given away, as noted above. It is said 
to lose its power when taken off the person, and to regain it 
when put on, which may be due to the idea that it derives a 
certain vitality from the body of its owner. 

Various charms are worn to ward off sickness. A thong of 
sealskin around the wrist is an almost universal custom. Wooden 
and fur amulets prepared by some famous shaman are in constant 
use. They are worn attached to the clothing, or over the part 
affected. Strange or peculiarly shaped objects are particularly 
efficacious. The feet of birds are a common amulet (Plate 
XXXIV a). 


Death is not considered by the Eskimo as the end of exist- 
ence, but merely as a break in one's life. For this reason articles 
which will be useful are placed on the graves of the deceased. 
No Eskimo would touch these under any consideration. 1 When 
they rot away, it is said that the shade has taken them. 

The Eskimo distinguish between a man's body and his 
spirit. There is also another soul which corresponds to the 
vitality of the body, as exemplified in the breath and warmth 
of the same. This soul leaves a man at death, but the spirit 
lingers around the village for three days before taking his final 

1 A Moravian missionary told me about a modern Labrador Eskimo who wished to possess 
a fine knife, which he had seen on an old grave. He did not dare to steal it from the dead, 
so procured a spy-glass which he left in its place for the use of the deceased. 


departure to the other world. The Eskimo are very careful not 
to offend the ghost at this time, and taboo the use of sharp 
instruments, loud talking, games, or routine labour, until it is 
gone. The ghost is thought to be irritable at this period and 
ready to vent its spleen on the community, and is viewed in an 
entirely different light from the affection displayed toward it 

The place to which the spirit finally takes its departure 
depends more on the mode of death of the deceased than the manner 
of his life. Those who have been murdered or have committed 
voluntary suicide and women who die in childbirth are recom- 
pensed with the highest heaven, located in the Aurora Borealis, 
where they enjoy themselves playing football with a walrus head. 
Those who die an ordinary death descend to the world below, 
where they carry on a monotonous existence, which is free, how- 
ever, from the cold and hardships of their earthly home. The 
Labrador Eskimo visit the graves of their dead regularly and 
place offerings of food and tobacco on them for the sustenance 
of the spirits. Clothing is also given. The Alaskan Eskimo 
have regular feasts for the same purpose, in which the namesakes 
of the dead figure as the recipient of such favours, which are 
enjoyed through them by the dead. 

The spirits below communicate with their relatives on earth 
through the angekok. They ascend from below through his body, 
and answer questions concerning their welfare through his person. 
Sometimes they give advice or tell the reasons for sickness or 

When people wish to communicate with the spirits, they 
must put on a gutskin raincoat. This is the dress of the spirits. 
The angekok always wears one when he is performing cere- 
monies or communicating with the spirits. Now people call up 
the spirits beneath the earth with a stick. It is called kiMxin, 
conjuring. It is not the old way, but is perhaps derived from the 
Indians. It is not performed by a regular angekok, but by old 
men and old women. 

The dead require very different treatment from the living, 
and one must be very careful not to offend them. As soon as a 
relative expires one must weep hard, else the ghost will think 


he is not sorry. Grave clothes are prepared when the end is 
thought to be near (and the Eskimo have an almost unerring 
sense in detecting the approach of death), and the body stript 
and clothed anew. The material is always of the heaviest 
winter reindeer skins. If the patient unexpectedly recovers, 
the clothes must be given away. I knew a village loafer who got 
a beautiful pair of white reindeer skin trousers from the old 
headman on such an occasion. 

The body is usually buried the day after the death. At 
night a watch is set over the corpse, at which someone acts as 
company to the nearest relative, lest the corpse might over- 
power him. There seems to be an idea prevalent among the 
Eskimo that until it is properly buried the corpse is liable to 
work harm on anyone. All except the relatives are forbidden 
to touch a dead body, and all who assist in the burial must stop 
up the left nostril with reindeer moss to avert the evil influence. 

At night the cause of his sickness is inquired of the deceased 
by divining or head-lifting. This ceremony is performed by 
the nearest relative, and consists in passing a band around the 
head and lifting it. The corpse is questioned as the head is 
raised. If it is light, the answer is in the negative; if heavy, 
it is an affirmative response. I suspect that sometimes the head 
becomes heavy when an affirmative is desired. 

After burial, the shaman who officiates calls the spirit of 
the dead, and inquires of his welfare for the benefit of the rest 
of the people. Spirits who have recently passed away are sup- 
posed to be in closer relation to the living, and hence better 
prophets of good huntings, etc. At such times it is occasionally 
revealed that some one had bewitched the dead and thus caused 
his sickness and death. The offender is killed by his relatives. 
Quite often a serious illness is attributed to the machinations 
of a neighbouring angekok. There is nothing to do in such 
cases except to fight him with local magic. Such a case came 
to my attention in Bering strait. An Eskimo girl who was sick 
could keep nothing on her stomach. The cause was attributed 
to a spirit(tungak)sent by another shaman to inhabit her stomach. 
As fast as she swallowed her food it was pushed up by this "devil." 
Five local shamans could not overcome the spell of the stranger. 


Of the power of the angekut marvellous tales are related. 
The Eskimo believe in them implicitly and balk at no marvel 
which is attributed to them. They say that they have no 
knowledge of the spirit world and must believe those who 
possess it. For the same reason the Labrador Eskimo told 
the early missionaries that if they knew more of the spirit 
world than their angekut, they would listen to them. 

Of the dark side of shamanism among the Eskimo, little 
has been said. There are persistent tales in Labrador, started 
by old travellers, 1 and also mentioned by the Moravians, of a 
custom of the angekut of sacrificing young children on the graves 
of their mothers (that their spirits may be joined in the other 
world ?). This I am very loath to believe, and would rather 
attribute it to physical necessity, which sometimes drives the 
Eskimo to strangle a child when the mother has died and the 
father is unable to rear it. 



The early Moravian writers mention a festival which the 
Labrador Eskimo used to hold when a dead whale was discovered 
in prime condition (according to Eskimo tastes). A period 
of festivity followed, "as an expression of gratitude to Torngak 
(Torngarsoak) ." 

A large snow-house as much as 16 feet high and 70 feet 
in circumference, was built, and the interior arranged for dancing 
and sports. The latter consisted of contests with the lance 
and boxing (probably the Eskimo custom of taking blow for blow). 
There were singing and dancing by the people, and shamanistic 
performances. No details are given. 

1 "The Moravian Missionaries have laboured hard to implant the Christian faith upon 
the shores of Labrador, and they have succeeded as well as could be expected, but the Indians 
(Eskimo) are so attached to their ancient superstitions, that they hesitate not to sacrifice 
a favourite child on the grave of its deceased parent, under the belief that their earthly disso- 
lution is immediately succeeded by a blissful reunion above; and this they do, notwithstanding 
their consciousness of the enormity attending so horrid an action." Chappell, Voyage to 
Newfoundland and the Southern Coast of Labrador, London, 1818. 

The same author does not hesitate to say that the Eskimo are "honest in their principles, 
mild in their dispositions, and hospitable to unprotected strangers"; ibid., p. 99. 


The missionaries say that these feasts were accompanied 
by a great deal of "rowdyism," in which the women were in- 
volved, which may refer to an exchange of wives or favours 
at the close of the festival, as is recorded in other sections (see 
Boas and Nelson). 

The whaling festival is undoubtedly an old custom of the 
Eskimo and formerly widespread. We find it among the Central, 
Alaskan, and Asiatic Eskimo as well. It may have been intro- 
duced in the west through Siberian tribes, as the Chukchee 
and Koryak have a similar festival, but in the east it has 
all the earmarks of an original Eskimo custom. 


Information and pictures of this peculiar dance were ob- 
tained from Mr. Holloway of St. Johns, Newfoundland, who 
witnessed its performance on the "Home" some ten years ago 
by a Hopedale Eskimo named Simon. Simon was one of the 
Eskimo who took part in the World's Fair exhibition. Addi- 
tional information was obtained from the Hopedale Eskimo 
and a former trader of the Hudson's Bay Company, who were 
acquainted with the dance. The dance is chiefly interesting 
as it raises the question whether the Eskimo did not have dances, 
like their stories, which contained an indirect ethical teaching. 
The Eskimo themselves said that it was intended to teach the 
people not to be too greedy. 

Simon's assistant, a small boy, lay down on the deck with 
outstretched hands and feet, simulating a dead animal. A 
shawl representing a skin was thrown over him. 

Then Simon started dancing around him, and began ex- 
pressing his great joy at having killed so valuable an animal. 
He sang that he was a very ambitious young man who had fallen 
in love with a very pretty girl. To gain her favour he had trav- 
elled north for valuable furs, far beyond the limits that any 
of his tribe had ever known, and now he had slain this strange 
animal with its rare fur, and he would return home rich and marry 
the girl he had undergone such hardship to win. 

1 To "sculp" a seal is to skin it with the fat adhering to the hide. This is a term employed 
by the Newfoundland sealers. 


He took out his knife and said an incantation over it. Then 
he began skinning the animal, rolling back the hide. During 
all this time his assistant remained perfectly motionless. 

Simon continued his flensing, crooning to himself his great 
joy at his good fortune in catching so valuable a skin, and began 
to speculate on the sensation which his return would cause in 
his village. He kept rolling back the skin with each cut of the 
knife. The spectators watched him closely, but ventured no 
remarks until he was done. 

As Simon made the last cut and rolled the skin off the 
"animal," it suddenly came to life, jumped up, and ran off, 
leaving Simon with the skin in his hand, much chagrined. Simon 
on further examination of the skin, found that it was worthless. 
He cast it from him in disgust, stood for some time scratching 
his head in perplexity, much to the enjoyment of the audience, 
and finally walked away, apparently deeply disappointed. 


The mythology of the Labrador Eskimo exhibits those inter- 
esting complications of motives which might be expected of a 
people bordering on other tribes. We find the old stories of 
the original Eskimo stock in fragmentary or abbreviated form, 
as in the tales of 'The Girl who Married a Whale," the "Story 
of the Sun and Moon," the "Story of the Narwhal," and "The 
Orphan Boy and the Moon Man." 

Little anecdotes of animal life, which may reflect Indian 
influence, are told to amuse the children. Such stories are 
quite plentiful in Labrador, as the "Origin of the Sea-Pigeons," 
"Origin of the Walrus and Caribou," the "Story of the Owl and 
the Raven," and "How the Caribou Lost their Large Eyes." 
The story of the "Quarrel of the Gull and the Raven," on which 
the future of the white and Eskimo race depended, is modern, 
but well known, both in Labrador and Baffin island. 

Stories which show the strong belief of the Labrador Eskimo 
in their Tornait, or spirit helpers are the "Story of the Lame 
Hunter," "The Place where the Caribou Live," "How the Trout 
were made," and "How the Caribou Lost their Large Eyes." 


(Under present conditions, it is sometimes difficult to tell whether 
an Eskimo means by "Torngak" an individual helper, or "the 
great Torngak," Torngarsoak, who was a deity among them, 
as the missionaries and Eskimo at the stations used the term 

Two stories were collected of the Adlit "strangers" (allat, 
South Labrador). I am not sure whether these stories refer 
to the Indians or the Tunnit. 1 The story of "The Girl who lost 
her Arms" is referred by the Labrador Eskimo to the Tunnit. 

Local stories are illustrated in "The Thinking Image and 
Adlasuq and the Giant." "The Story of the Orphan Boy and 
the Moon Man" has been localized in Labrador, as elsewhere. 

Considerable information regarding the Tunnit was gathered 
on this trip. It is placed in the mythological section for con- 
venience in comparing with the traditions gathered by other 
writers. The author is of the opinion that the Tunnit are entitled 
to an historical position in northern Labrador. 


The Baffin Island Eskimo have a legend that the present 
tribes living on the northern and southern shores formerly 
lived together near Ussualung in Cumberland sound. 2 For 
some reason they quarrelled and separated, the Iglumiut (Labra- 
dor Eskimo) going to the south. The Sikosuilarmiut (Eskimo 
of southwest Baffin island) have intercourse with the Igolumiut 
of Cape Wolstenholme, crossing Hudson strait by Tudjaraaqd- 
jung (Mill island), Akugdlirn (Salisbury island), and Tudja- 
quaralung (Nottingham island). 3 The crossing is dangerous 
and not often attempted. 

At Cape Chidley, the Labrador Eskimo have a legend that 
their ancestors once crossed the strait by way of the Button 
islands and Resolution island to Baffin island, and found a strange 
people there whose words they could not understand. They 
call the Button islands, which stretch north from Killinek, 

1 The term adlit "strangers," is applied by the present Labrador Eskimo to the Indians 
of the interior, but generically may refer to any other people than themselves. 
* See Boas, The Central Eskimo, 6th Annual Report B.A.E., p. 618. 
1 See Boas, ibid., pp. 462, 463. 


the Tutjat, the "stepping stones." There are plenty of seal 
and walrus there and an occasional polar bear, but the tides 
are so strong that it is dangerous for the kayaks, so they seldom 
visit them. From the outermost Tutjak they can see Tutjarluk, 
"The Big Stepping Stone," Resolution island (Tudjaqdjuaq 
in the Baffin Island dialect). This route, at the eastern end 
of the strait, is about the same distance as the western route 
described, but more difficult on account of the heavy tides caused 
by the meeting of the waters of Hudson strait and the Atlantic. 
The similarity of the names of the first islands off the Baffin 
Island coast in the eastern and western link, Tudjaqdjuaq 
(Resolution island) and Tudjaraaqdjung (Mill island) suggests 
that they were considered by the Baffin-islanders as well as the 
Labrador Eskimo, as the "Big Stepping Stones" across the strait. 


Tunnit (Tornit, Baffin island), according to tradition, 
were a gigantic race formerly inhabiting the northeastern coast 
of Labrador, Hudson strait, and southern Baffin island. Ruins 
of old stone houses and graves, which are ascribed to them by 
the present Eskimo, are found throughout this entire section, 
penetrating only slightly, however, into Ungava bay. Briefly we 
may say that there is evidence, archaeological as well as traditional, 
that the Tunnit formerly inhabited both sides of Hudson strait. 
The oldest Eskimo of northern Labrador still point out these ruins, 
and relate traditions of their having lived together until the Tunnit 
were finally exterminated or driven out by the present Eskimo. 

According to the account given by an old Nachvak Eskimo, 
the Tunnit in ancient times had two villages in Nachvak bay. 
Their houses were built on an exposed shore (the present Eskimo 
always seek a sheltered beach for their villages, where they can 
land in their kayaks), showing that they had little knowledge 
of the use of boats. When they wanted boats, they stole them 
from the Eskimo. From this thieving of kayaks the original 
quarrel is said to have begun. 

For all their bigness and strength, the Tunnit were a stupid 
slow-going race (according to the Eskimo version), and fell an 


easy prey to the Eskimo, who used to stalk them and hunt 
them down like game. They did not dare to attack them openly, 
so cut them off, one by one, by following them, and attacking 
and killing them when asleep. Their favourite method was to 
bore holes in the foreheads of the Tunnit with an awl (a drill 
in the Greenland story in Rink). Two brothers especially 
distinguished themselves in this warfare, and did not desist 
until the last of the Tunnit was exterminated. The Tunnit 
built their houses of heavy rocks, which no Eskimo could lift. 
They used the rocks for walls, and whale ribs and shoulder 
blades for the roof. At the entrance of the house two whale 
jaw-bones were placed. Ruins of these houses can still be seen, 
overgrown with grass, with the roof fallen in. They may be 
distinguished from old Eskimo iglus by the small, square space 
they occupy. 

The Tunnit did not use the bow and arrow, but flint-headed 
lances and harpoons with bone or ivory heads. They were so 
strong that one of them could hold a walrus as easily as an 
Eskimo a seal. 

They did not undestand the dressing of sealskins, but left 
them in the sea, where the little sea-worms ( ?) cleaned off the 
fat in a short time. The Tunnit dressed in winter in untanned 
deerskins. They were accustomed to carry pieces of meat 
around with them, between their clothing and body, until it 
was putrid, when they ate it. 

The Tunnit were very skilful with the lance, which they 
threw, sitting down and aiming at the object by resting the 
shaft on the boot. For throwing at a distance they used the 

They did not hunt deer like the Eskimo, but erected long 
lines of stone "men" in a valley through which the deer passed. 
The deer would pass between the lines of stones, and the hunters 
hidden behind them would lance them. Remains of these lines 
of rocks may still be seen. 

Their weapons were much larger, but not so well made as 
those of the Eskimo, as can be seen from the remains on their 
graves. The men used flint for the harpoon heads, and crystal 
for their drills. The women used a rounded piece of slate 


without a handle for a knife. They used a very small lamp 
for heating purposes, which they carried about them. For 
cooking they had a much larger lamp than the Eskimo. Until 
trouble arose between them, the Tunnit and the Eskimo used to 
intermarry, but after it was found that an alien wife would 
betray her husband to her people, no more were taken. A 
Tuneq woman, who betrayed the Eskimo of the village she lived 
in to the Tunnit, had her arms cut off. After that no women 
were taken on either side. (The story of this incident is given 
following in "An Adlit Tale.") 

The Tunnit were gradually exterminated by the Eskimo, 
until only a scattered one remained here and there in their vil- 
lages. How these were overcome by strategems is handed down 
in the tales of the giant at Hebron, said to be the last of the 
Tunnit, and Adlasuq and the Giant. The giant allows himself 
to be bound in a snow-house, and is slain by the Eskimo hunters. 
This story has attained a mythological character in Baffin 
island, 1 but is ascribed by the Labrador Eskimo directly to the 
Tunnit. A story about the Tunnit, giving considerable cir- 
cumstantial detail, was obtained from a Nachvak woman: 

"At Nachvak the Tunnit were chasing a big whale (this was 
before the time of the present Eskimo). They were in two skin 
boats, about twenty men and women in each boat. They had 
the whale harpooned, and were being towed round and round the 
bay by him. Somehow the line got tangled in one of the boats 
and capsized. The other boat with the line still made fast to 
the whale, went to pick up the people in the water, and was 
capsized too. Another boat came off from the shore, and picked 
up some of the people in the water. Most of them were drowned. 

"They were buried under a hill on a big bank near Nachvak. 
There are some thirty graves on this bank, with pots, harpoons, 
and knives buried by the graves. Even the remains of the boats 
are there. The knives and pots are of stone. The harpoon 
blades are of flint. The umiaks were much larger than the 
present boats." My informant added that there were also 

See Boas, p. 292, Bull. Am. Mus. Nat. Hist., vol. XV. 


remains of bows and arrows. "The bows were of whalebone 
and the arrows of flint." 

Further information was obtained from another informant. 

Tunnit Houses. 

The houses had long stone passages. The two posts at 
the entrance were of whale jaw-bones and shoulder blades on 
top. The walls were of stone and turf. The roof was formed of 
whale ribs on props, and covered with turf. The roofs of the 
houses have now fallen in, but the walls are still intact. 

Tunnit Boots. 

The Tunnit did not know how to manufacture waterproof 
boots. They took a long strip of sealskin with the hair on, and 
wrapped it around the feet, starting at the toes. For a sole they 
would take a flat, square piece of skin, cut holes around the edge, 
"reave" it up with a drawstring, and tie it around the ankles. 

Interpretation of the Evidence. 

The old tradition of the Tunnit in Labrador, gathered from 
the resident Moravian missionaries, appears in Rink 1 as follows: 

"Our ancestors and the tunneks or tunnit (in Greenlandish 
tornit, plural of tunek), in days of yore lived together; but the 
tunneks fled from fear of our people, who used to drill holes in 
their foreheads while yet alive. With this view they moved 
from here to the north, crossing over to Killinek (Cape Chidley). 

"While dwelling among us they had sealskins with the 
blubber attached for bed robes. Their clothes were made in 
the same way. Their weapons were formed of slate and horn- 
stone, and their drills of crystal. They were strong and formi- 
dable, especially one of them by the name of Jauranat, from which 
is formed javianarpok (Greenlandish uavianarpok) . Huge 
blocks of stone are still to be seen which they were able to move. 
Some ruins of their houses are also found here and there in our 
country, chiefly upon the islands, having been built of stones 

1 Rink, Tales and traditions of the Eskimo, p. 469. 


and differing from the abodes of our people. One of our ancestors 
when kayaking had a tunnek for his companion, who had a bird 
spear, the points of which were made of walrus tooth." 

The Eskimo woman taken by Courtemanche, mentioned 
previously (page 5), also spoke of a hostile, foreign people in 
northern Labrador. She said they "were badly armed, as they 
had only knives and axes of stone and not of iron, but were 
feared by the Eskimo." She added the perplexing information 
that they "used snowshoes (raquettes) which also were not in 
use among her countrymen." 1 The Eskimo tribes of Hudson 
bay and farther west, however, use snowshoes. 

Thalbitzer, 2 in a careful survey of the evidence concerning 
the Tunnit, offers three possible explanations of their presence 
in northern Labrador: (1), they may have been an Indian tribe 
which had made its way out to the sea; (2), or possibly Norsemen 
from Greenland; (3), or an older Eskimo tribe from the west 
who brought with them their more primitive culture. It seems 
to me that the first explanation is made impossible by the 
description of the life and material culture of the Tunnit. The 
second is very improbable. A careful survey of the ruins of 
the east coast revealed nothing which could not be assigned to 
the Eskimo. In Tales and Traditions of the Eskimo, gathered 
by Rink from Labrador and Greenland, a distinction is made 
between the Kablunit (Norsemen) and the Tornit (Tunnit), 
which would probably not have occurred if they had been re- 
garded as one and the same people. While the Tunnit appear 
to have an historical connexion in Labrador, they have assumed 
a mythological character in the tales which have spread as far 
west as Hudson bay and as far east as Greenland. It was to 
be expected that the story would assume this form among the 
tribes who had heard of them but with whom they had not come 
in actual contact. (The Tunnit or Tornit (singular tuneq) must 
not be confounded, however, with theTornait (singular Tornaq) 
"spirits.") The third explanation, that the Tunnit were simply 
a more primitive race of Eskimo with whom the Labrador 

1 Charlevoix (1744), p. 17. 

2 Thalbitzer, Notes on ethnographical collections from East Greenland, pp. 687-90. The 
Ammassilik Eskimo, Copenhagen, 1914. 



Eskimo came in contact, appears to me to be the correct and 
obvious one. Judging from the scanty descriptions of their 
culture, they were not very different from old tribes in Hudson 
bay and Alaska. Old stone houses with whalebone ribs for 
roofs are described by Boas (pages 548, 549) as still existing, in 
a more or less ruinous state, among the Central Eskimo, by 
Nelson, among the Alaskan Eskimo (pages 259, 260), and by 
Bogoras among the Asiatic Eskimo (pages 181, 182). Their 
stone weapons could be paralleled in archaeological collections 
from different Eskimo tribes. The fact that they had forgotten 
or did not understand the construction of the kayak should not 
count against them as an Eskimo tribe, because a like fact is 
recorded by Rasmussen (page 32) of the Polar Eskimo, who 
had also forgotten the use of the bow and arrow, as is recorded 
of the Tunnit, until its use was reintroduced by immigrant 
Eskimo from the south. That the Tunnit did not understand 
the dressing of skins is the main difficulty, but this should not 
be taken too literally, as in all their stories about them, the 
Eskimo like to exaggerate the stupidity of the Tunnit and their 
own cleverness in overcoming them. 


A big, overgrown giant, the last of the Tunnit left on the 
Labrador coast, lived a long time ago near Hebron. He would not 
hunt nor do any work. Whenever he wanted food he took it 
away from the hunters. He would watch when they brought in 
their seals at the end of the day's hunt, and go up to them and 
take his choice. They were all afraid of him on account of his 
size and strength and did not dare resist him. 

Finally a hard winter came when the hunters could get no 
seal. Then he had to starve with the rest of them. When they 
were nearly dead with hunger, the people decided to send out 
six of their best hunters to see if they could not get some food. 
They were all surprised when the giant asked to go along too. 
Then they saw a chance to get rid of him. So they asked him 
to promise to obey all the customs of the hunters, which he did 
readily enough, suspecting nothing. 


The first night out, after they had erected a snow-house, they 
told him that it was the custom for every young hunter to be 
bound the first evening on the hunt. So he allowed himself to 
be bound, having promised to obey all their customs. They 
tied his hands and feet with heavy lashing, nu-pu-lu't, from their 
komatiks. They did not dare trust ordinary line (a"tlaunaq). 

When he was sound asleep, in the middle of the night, they 
set on him and killed him with their lances; but bound as he was, 
he managed to break the heavy line, and kill one of them before 
he was finally killed. 

When the hunters returned home without him, his wife 
asked where he was, but the hunters would not tell her. Finally 
she understood. She went out and got his body and buried it. 
The grave can still be seen on the north side of Saglek bay. 

Another version, which gives the additional detail that the 
hunters cut through the side of the snow-house to get at the 
giant, is as follows: 

Once on a time there lived a giant near Hebron, who was 
so heavy that he could not walk on new ice. 1 He was the tyrant 
of the village. Whatever he wanted he took, and no one dared 
dispute him. 

One year he expressed a wish that he would like to see how 
seals were killed and how the men went hunting. (He never 
hunted himself but stole from others). The hunters thought it 
a fine chance to get him in their power. They wanted to get 
rid of him because they were afraid of him and he was always 
bullying them. So they told him that if he wanted to go seal 
hunting with them, he would have to do exactly as they told 
him. He promised that he would, and they let him go with 

So the first night they were out on the ice, they built a snow- 
house, and told him that it was their custom to be lashed with 
skin line and left alone in the snow-house all night. So he let 
them tie him up, and lay down to sleep. 

Now the other Eskimo outside waited until they thought 
he was sound asleep. Then they cut a big hole in the side of the 

1 Cf. Boas, Eskimo of Baffin land and Hudson bay, p. 292, Bull. Am. Mus. Nat. Hist., 
vol. XV. 


house and three men went in, while eight stood outside waiting. 
The three men inside jumped on the giant, and the eight men 
came in and joined in the fight. The giant broke the lines he 
was fastened with, and killed three men before the others over- 
powered him and killed him with their knives. So that was 
the last of the giant. His grave is to be seen to this day. It is a 
very large and long stone grave in Saglek bay. 

Another story, concerning a giant character of the same 
locality, is told, in which he is overcome by a dwarf: 


A long time ago there lived in Saglek bay a giant who played 
the tyrant over the people there. He would do no work, but 
stole seals from the hunters. They did not dare to show their 
resentment because he was so big and strong. Finally they 
killed him by getting him to allow himself to be bound. 

In the same village there lived a dwarf named Alasuq. He 
lived alone with his mother. His father had died when he was 
young, and he had supported his mother ever since, like a man. 
Although he was so small, he was very strong. He was a jolly 
little fellow and well liked by all the people. 

One day the giant, who was always boasting what he could 
do and frightening the hunters, challenged them to a kayak race 
around an island in the bay. None of them dared to accept, but 
little Alasuq said he would try him. Everyone laughed at him, 
but it did not turn him from his purpose. 

He laid aside his usual paddle, and made himself an enor- 
mously large one, larger even than the giant's. It had holes in 
the middle for hand grips. 

When he came out to race, all the people remarked about it, 
particularly the giant, who made fun of the little man and his 
big paddle. 

But when they started, no one laughed any more. The 
little fellow handled his paddle so strongly that he would have 
broken an ordinary paddle. He quickly outdistanced the giant. 
When he was rounding the island, long before he came in sight, 


the people could hear his kayak, shish, cleaving the water. The 
giant was badly beaten, but took it goodnaturedly, as, of course, 
he had to, having challenged the hunters. 

The little dwarf lived for a long time afterwards, and was 
always much respected by the people. 

The Baffin Island Eskimo of Cumberland sound have a tale 
of a dwarf who was very strong and a great kayaker. He defeats 
two young men who had taunted him on account of his small 
size. 1 


Once an Eskimo found an Adlit girl by the side of a river 
when he was out hunting. She was starving. All her relatives 
were dead. So he took her home and adopted her as his daughter. 
Her name was Ivaranax. 

One day she asked her foster-father for some reindeer fat. 
She said she was tired of seal meat, and wanted something nice to 
eat. That made her foster-father angry. So he told her to go to 
the Adlit and get some reindeer fat. She went out. He could 
not find her that evening. 

The next morning she returned, dressed in a reindeer-skin 
coat and eating reindeer fat. The same day all the men went 
hunting. Then the Adlit, who had followed her, attacked the 
village. They killed all the women and children but three, who 
hid under a pile of skins. When the men returned, they found 
their women and children kilted. So they made many arrows 
and followed the trail of the Adlit. When they came up to 
their tents, they looked in. The Adlit were eating and laughing. 
The girl was among them. Then they killed them all but the 
girl. Her they kept for punishment. They led her out and cut 
off both her arms. She ran off with the blood streaming from 
her arms. She had not gone far before she fell dead. 


Once an Eskimo scolded his wife for not taking proper care 
of his boot-soles. She went out along the shore and cried. 

1 See Boas, Eskimo of Baffin land and Hudson bay, p. 270. 
5 Adlit, northern Labrador; Allat, southern Labrador. 


While she was there, two Adlit came up and asked her what was 
the matter. She told them, and they offered to take her to their 
home. She went with them, and married one of the Adlit. 
Later this Adlit met her former husband when out hunting. 
He told him who he was but would not take him to his former 

Once the people were travelling and came across a camp of 
Adlit. They could not understand each other, until someone 
cried, "Call the Eskimo woman." Then a woman came out and 
acted as interpreter. It was the girl who had run away. She 
would not go back to her husband, so they left her. She lived 
with the Adlit until she died. 


In the north lives Torngarsoak, the great Torngak; he made 
man from nothing. The man travelled a long way, and found a 
woman. They married, and from them sprang all the Eskimo. 

One day Torngarsoak set some puppies adrift in a pair of old 
boots. The puppies drifted off in different directions. Finally 
one returned bringing with it the Indians; very much later the 
other puppy returned as a man, bringing people with white 
skins in a big umiak. They were the white people. The man 
then turned back into a dog. 

There was a woman who married the dog. Her father was 
ashamed of her and took her in his umiak to a lonely island. 
When out to sea he threw her overboard. She seized hold of the 
side of the boat, but he cut off her fingers with his knife. The 
thumb became the walrus, the first finger the seal, and the middle 
finger the white bear. 

"The woman sank, and now lives at the bottom of the sea. 
Another version : 

One day an Eskimo was chopping down a tree. He noticed 
that the chips that fell into the water became water animals 
and the chips that fell on the land became land animals. That 
is how the animals were created. 

Before this time the earth had been covered with water. 
Finally the water went away, and the dry land appeared. The 
seaweed and kelp became the grass and trees. 



There is a giant spirit who lives in the north. When he 
blows his breath, violent snowstorms occur. Other spirits live 
in the east and west. They breathe soft winds and summer 
weather. Female spirits dwell to the south. They send the 
flowers and summer rain. They live up in the sky and keep 
the rain in big bags. When they run across the sky the water 
escapes. The thunder is the noise of their running across the 


The ends of the land and sea are bounded by an immense 
abyss, over which a narrow and dangerous pathway leads to 
the heavenly regions. The sky is a great dome of hard material 
arched over the earth. There is a hole in it through which the 
spirits pass to the true heavens. Only the spirits of those who 
have died a voluntary or violent death, and the raven, have 
been over this pathway. The spirits who live there light torches 
to guide the feet of new arrivals. This is the light of the aurora. 
They can be seen there feasting and playing football with a 
walrus skull. 

The whistling crackling noise which sometimes accompanies 
the aurora is the voices of these spirits trying to communicate 
with the people of the earth. They should always be answered 
in a whispering voice. Youths and small boys dance to the 
aurora. The heavenly spirits are called selamiut, "sky-dwell- 
ers," those who live in the sky. 


For three days after an Eskimo dies, the spirit lingers around 
the scenes of its earthly existence. Then people must be very 
careful not to offend it. After taking a last look at its native 
village, it sets out for the land of the nu'namiut, "the earth 
people," or "those who dwell in (beneath) the earth." 

The way to the world beneath lies through a long dark 
tunnel guarded by a big dog ( ?). He is always on the lookout 
for unwary spirits. 


Having arrived at the land of the nu'namiut, the spirit 
finds them dwelling in villages much as on the earth. He 
seeks out the location of his relatives and lives with them. They 
lead a monotonous existence depending on the offerings made 
at their graves for food and drink. If their relatives neglect 
them, they go hungry and naked. 

There is no cold nor sleet in the world beneath, but it is dark 
and gloomy. 


There was once a great angekok who felt it his duty to find 
out for the people the place where the caribou went to when 
they passed in great numbers into the interior. So he asked his 
torngak to show him where they went. His torngak told him 
the way to go. He told him to walk on and on, and not to stop 
until he told him. So the angekok started off. He walked 
day after day. For two moons he walked. His boots did not 
wear out because his torngak was with him. 

At last, one day, his torngak said, "Stop! Make no noise, 
and wait till the sun sets. Then you will see the resting place 
of the caribou. You must not wish to kill what you see, or I 
will turn you into a mouse." 

So the angekok did as he had been told. When the sun went 
down, he saw a very large house made of turf and rock. Stand- 
ing across the door was a very big deer. It was the king of the 
caribou. He was so big that the other caribou could walk in 
under him without touching him. 

The caribou came up in big bands, and all passed under the 
king into the house. When the last one had passed in, he lay 
down and kept guard over the others. 

The angekok went home and told the people what he had 
seen. But he did not dare tell them where to find the wonderful 
place, for fear that they might desire to kill so many caribou 
and his torngak would turn him into a mouse. So the Eskimo 
know that there is a place where the reindeer live and stay 
with their king, but although they are always looking for it, 
they can never find it. But they hope to do so some time. 



Once upon a time a man who was a great angekok went 
out walking along the shore. He looked at the beautiful calm 
water and wished that he could make something to live in it out 
of something that grew on the land. So he looked around and 
saw some willows growing not far from him. He went over and 
broke off a little dry stick. Then he told his torngak to make it 
into something alive, and as he spoke he threw the stick into the 
water. It sank. 

After a short time a fish came up and said to him, "I am 
very wet and cold. I would rather grow on the land again." 

So the man took the fish out of the water, and folded a 
piece of seaweed around it. Then he threw it back into the water 
and bade it go and be useful to all the Eskimo. He named it 
exa"lupik, the trout. 

The stripe that runs along the side of the trout is the seam 
where the folds of seaweed meet. 


The Crow and the Gull had a quarrel. The Crow was for 
the Eskimo, and the Gull for the white man. Whichever won 
the fight, his side was to be the strongest. So they fought. 
The Gull won. That is why the white men are more numerous 
and stronger than the Eskimo. 


Once a girl was walking along the shore. She wished she 
had a husband. She saw a whale's skull lying on the sand. 
So she said, "I will take the whale bone for a husband." It 
came to life and married her. 

She went to live with the whale in the sea. The whale was 
very jealous of her, and tied a line to her for fear she would escape. 

One day the girl saw her father and brothers going by in 
an umiak. She called to them to take her aboard. Soon the 
whale discovered her escape. He came swimming furiously 
after the boat. When he was quite near, the girl took off her 


mittens and threw them into the water. While he was tearing 
them up, they gained a little. Then he came on again, making 
the water foam in his anger. Then she took off her boots and 
threw them into the water. While he was thrashing them with 
his tail, they made for the shore. But he caught them again, 
when they were close to the shore. Then the girl took off her 
qo'lituk 1 and threw it into the water. While he was tearing this 
up, they landed. But he was so angry that he did not notice 
the land, and came on again. He stranded in the shallow 
water, and was easily killed by her father and brothers. Then 
he changed back into a bone. 


At one time when all the rest of the people were in the 
singing-house (qa'g'i) a young girl was visited nightly by a man 
whose identity she could not discover. So she smeared some 
soot and oil on her breast to discover him. The next day, 
when she went to the qaggi to take her brother's meal, she was 
horrified to see that he had a black streak on his face. She 
immediately took a knife and cut off her breasts, and placed 
them on the dish, saying, "Since you desire me, eat them." 

Her brother was so angry that he chased her out of the kagi, 
and around and around the house. Finally, she ran up into the 
sky and he ran after her. They were changed into the sun and 
moon. The sun is constantly following the moon, but some- 
times they meet (when there is an eclipse). 


Once there was a man who had lost his wife and who lived all 
alone. But every day, when he returned from hunting, he found 
that everything was in order as his wife would have done. There 
were no signs of anyone in the house, nor tracks outside. He 
could not understand it, and determined to find out who was 
taking care of the house. 

1 This is the term used in northern Labrador for the deerskin frock. It is a cognate of 
the Baffin Island qo'liturj. 


So, one day, instead of going to hunt, he hid himself a little 
way from the entrance, where he could observe if anyone went in. 
Finally he saw a fox enter. He thought that the fox was after 
his meat, so followed it into the house. What was his surprise 
to find, on entering, a beautiful woman dressed in skins. On 
the rack above the lamp hung the skin of a fox. He asked her 
to marry him, and she became his wife. 

They lived together for a long time happily, until one day 
the husband detected a strong odour in the house. He asked 
her where the smell came from. She replied that it was the 
odour of the fox, and if he was going to scold her, she would 
run away. She slipped on the fox-skin and was gone in a moment. 
The man never saw her again. 


There was once a young man who lived with his mother 
and sister. He was snow-blind, and for some reason his mother 
wished to get rid of him. She tried to starve him. But his 
sister on the sly, used to bring him bits of meat. He could not 
hunt because he was snow-blind. 

But one day a bear came to the snow-house, and his mother 
guided his bow so that he could shoot the bear through the win- 
dow. He shot the bear, and killed him. But his mother 
did not want him to know that he had killed the bear, so she 
told him that he had missed it, and that his arrow had stuck 
into the hard ice on the side of the snow-house. So she was 
living on the meat of the bear, she and her daughter, while her 
son was starving. 

But his sister managed to feed him something on the sly. 
At first she would not tell him where the meat came from, but 
he kept questioning her, and at last she told him that he had 
killed the bear. Then he knew that his mother was trying to 
starve him, and he planned to be revenged on her. So in the 
spring, after the ice had broken up, when he had got his sight 
back, he used to hunt for white whales along the shore. 

One day he and his mother and sister were all standing on 
the beach, and he was waiting with his harpoon to strike a whale. 


He struck one with his whale harpoon, which had a long line 
attached. He tied the end around his mother's waist; as the 
whale swam out to sea, it dragged her down the beach and into 
the water. As she went, she kept crying, iynialuma, "My 
son did it." When the whale went down, she would go down 
too, and when it came up, she would come up too, crying, 
iynialuma, "My son did it," over and over again. Finally 
she disappeared. 

She still lives with the white whales, and in the spring, 
when they are going along the shore, the people can hear her 
crying, luma, luma, iynialuma, and say that she is still alive 
among them. 1 


Near Okkak there is a rock, curiously marked with what the 
Eskimo say are the blood and brains of the people in the following 

A long time ago there lived in a village near Okkak a poor 
orphan boy. He had no relatives and the people he lived with 
treated him very badly. They made him sleep in the entrance 
tunnel with the dogs and flung him only bones to pick. They 
would not give him a knife, but the little daughter of the house 
gave him one secretly, and carried him bits of food when she 
could do so. Her kindness pleased him very much, and made 
him long to escape and improve his hard condition in life. 

One night he was lying on the ground, outside the passage- 
way, trying to think of a plan for escape, and gazing at the moon. 
The more he gazed at it, the more he thought he discerned the 
outlines of the face of a man in it. Finally he was sure it was 
a man, and cried out to him to come down and help him escape 
from his hard life. 

The man in the moon heard him, and came down. He 
took the little orphan boy down to the beach and beat him with 
a big whip. Every time he struck him he grew bigger and 
stronger. When he had finished, the little orphan boy was 

1 This story is also told in Baffin island in more detail. Dr. Boas informs me that in the 
Baffin Island version, the mother cries uluga, my ulu, my ulu; the consequent remorse of the 
son does not figure in the Labrador version. 


so strong, he could throw about big boulders like so many pebbles. 
Then the moon man went back up into the sky. The boy prac- 
tised lifting and throwing big rocks all night; then he went home. 
When the people with whom he lived saw how big and strong 
he had grown, and remembered how they had abused him, they 
were very much afraid. But the minute he saw them, he went 
mad with anger. He seized them by the legs and dashed their 
brains out on the rocks. The boy killed everyone but the little 
girl who had been kind to him. He took her for his wife. He 
took all the possessions of his former housemates, and became 
the head man of the village. 


There was once a hunter who was lame, and, although 
he was a good hunter, he found it very hard to keep up with 
the other men, when they went hunting for seals and bears. 
One day he went up on a hill to spy for seal on the ice. He 
saw a bear far off on the ice. Now he could not get near the 
bear, because he could not walk fast enough, and the bear was 
making for the drift ice. 

So he wished his torngak would come to his aid, and he 
moaned and groaned as if in great pain. He closed his eyes 
and said, "If I could get to that bear, nobody would be able to 
say that I was a poor hunter any more. I would be the best 
hunter, for none of the others are killing anything, and the people 
are going hungry." 

When he opened his eyes, he saw that the bear was walking 
about and stumbling as if it could not see. Then he knew that 
his torngak had indeed helped him and made the bear blind. 
He limped out on to the rough ice, and got near enough to kill 
the bear with his bow and arrows. He gained the good favour 
of all the other hunters by his deed, and of all the Eskimo living 
in snow-houses at the hunting ground. 


About half a mile from the old Hudson's Bay Company 
post at Nachvak (now abandoned) is a curiously formed stone. 


It is situated on a point, and in going by in a boat, it appears 
like a woman seated with her chin on her hand, thinking. The 
Eskimo of that vicinity relate the following story in connexion 
with this rock. 

Once there was a woman who was an outcast from the village. 
She had no people nor relatives, and was a slave for everybody. 
One day she was going along in a boat by this point. She had 
been rowing in the umiak all day, and was very tired. She went 
ashore, and sat down on a rock and started thinking. 

First she wished that she were dead and her labour over. 
Then she wished that she could be changed into a stone, like the 
one she was sitting on. While she was thinking this, a crow 
flew over her. He made three circles over her, and as he cawed 
three times, she was gradually turned into a stone. 

She is still seen in the same position with her hand to her 
chin, thinking. The Eskimo make offerings to her of needles, 
tobacco, and matches, whenever they pass. Some of the women 
have put a necklace of beads around her neck. 


Superguksoak made the walrus from her boots and the 
caribou from her breeches. The spots on the deer correspond 
to the marks on her breeches. When first made, the walrus had 
antlers on its head and the caribou had tusks. But the walrus 
upset the kayaks with its antlers and the caribou killed the 
hunters with its tusks, so Superguksoak changed them. She 
told the caribou to go inland and stay there. When she wants 
the caribou she calls kaite, kaite, "Come, come." 


Once the owl and the raven had a quarrel. The owl became 
angry and tipped a lamp over the raven. He was completely 
covered with soot. He was very much ashamed, and flew off, 
crying, "kaq, kaq." That is why he is black. 



Once upon a time there were some children playing on the 
top of a high cliff overlooking the sea. Below them the sea was 
covered with ice, but while they were playing, the ice opened, 
and the crack between the ice and the shore was filled with seals. 
Then the men of the village ran to get their kayaks to kill the 

The children paid no attention to the seals, but kept on 
playing, shouting at the top of their voices. When the men 
arrived at the crack in the ice, the seals were gone. They had 
been frightened away by the children's voices. The men were 
very angry at the children, and one of them said, "I wish the 
cliff would fall over and bury those noisy children." He had no 
sooner spoken than the cliff toppled over and buried the children 
in the boulders at its foot. But they were changed into sea- 
pigeons, with red feet. They dwell at the foot of the cliffs to 
this day. 


When the caribou were first found by the Eskimo, they had 
very large eyes. They could see a long distance and were very 
savage. So the Eskimo found it exceedingly difficult to get near 
enough to shoot them with their bows and arrows. Conse- 
quently they often went hungry. 

They asked their Torngak (Torngarsoak) to help them, and 
to make the caribou tamer. Presently one of the caribou grew 
very thoughtful. He said in caribou language to the others, "I 
wish our eyes were not so large, then we should be better looking." 
So the other caribou said, "Sew our eyes up then." So the 
thoughtful caribou took a little bone out of its foreleg and a piece 
of sinew and sewed up the corners of their eyes. The caribou 
became tamer and could not see so quickly, and the Eskimo were 
able to take them more easily. 

The Eskimo say that it is because the Torngak of their 
forefathers helped them that the caribou are not so savage and 
cannot see so far, and they are able to kill them and eat their 
meat and wear their skins for clothing. They always show the 


bone in the foreleg that was used by the caribou that their 
Torngak made thoughtful, when they tell the story. It is a 
bone in the ankle that seems to be loose under the skin. 


ulu"me po'i"Yisioxauvu'na Kaiya'kat 
To-day seals-for-I-am-hunting kayak-in. 

mau'rja Kai'liye'tse 
Over here, come all of you. 

qroyavu'na a^niyo'mik 
Cold am I very much. 

toyomi'm'la'se toyo'mia"nik takoyouma'qipo"Yut 

Unwelcome you are not strangers to see we are glad. 

naTmrt ai-ve'se 
Where going are you ? 

me"rjatuma' yepo" 
Tired I am very 

rja qa'nim'to'mit pi-suya-'ma- 
far from walked have I. 

What is 



tu"ktu* qa'nirjito'me 
deer far away? 


ei"s - et 

rains it. 

Free translation: 

To-day I am hunting for seals in the kayak. 

Come over here, all of you. 

(I am very cold.) 

You are not unwelcome, we are glad to see strangers. 

Where are you going ? 

(I am very tired; I have walked from far.) 

What is that like deer far away ? 

To-day it rains again. 


This incantation is half-sung, half-chanted in a rhythmical 
sing-song. Scanned : 

/ / ' 

*/ - - tf C/ ** 

' / J 

C 4^ _ t, _ , 


a', as in father. 

a, as in won, modified by dentals. 

e~ t as in J&ey. 

e, as in French #. 

v, as in pique. 

i, as in French fini. 

o' t as in note. 

y, as British o in go/. 

, ss oo in *noo. 

a, as w in 6w/. 

/>, as in French pas. 

m, as in English, but often long. 

b, as in English (rare). 

v, as in English (rare). 

<j), unrounded bilabial spirant, Kleinschmidt's /. 

0, unrounded bilabial spirant, Kleinschmidt's v. 



t, as in French, without aspiration. 

/', aspirated before e and . 

n, as in English. 

y, palatal sonant nasal, as ng in sing. 

k, palatal stop; like /, frequently aspirated before e and i. 

q, velar stop; in southern Labrador dialect often replaced by y. 

s, voiceless s; replaced in southern Labrador dialect by c, as sh in should. 

I, as in English. 

I, lateral surd spirant (rare): cf. Alaskan thl (Barnum). 

y, as j in German ja. 

f and Y, palatal and uvular voiced spirants. 

* and y, palatal and uvular voiceless spirants. 

h, initial breathing; replaces k in southern Labrador dialect. 


tc, as ch in church. 

is, as in nuts. 

dj, as dg in trudge. 


% lengthened consonant or vowel. 
', main stress. 


Boas, F. "The Central Eskimo." 6th Annual Report of the 

Bureau of American Ethnology, Washington, D.C. 
Boas, F. "The Eskimo of Baffin land and Hudson bay.'* 

Bulletin of the American Museum of Natural History, 

vol. XV, parts I and II. 
Bogoras, Waldemar. "The Chukchee." Jesup North Pacific 

Expedition. Memoirs of the American Museum of Natural 

History, vol. VII. 
Cartwright, George. "A journal of transactions and events 

during the residence of nearly sixteen years on the coast 

of Labrador." London, 1792. 
Chappell, Edward. "Voyage of His Majesty's Ship Rosamond 

to Newfoundland and the southern coast of Labrador." 

London, 1818. 

Gordon, G. B. "Notes on the Western Eskimo." Trans- 
actions of the University of Pennsylvania, Department of 

Archaeology, vol. 2. 


Gosling, W. G. "Labrador: its discovery, exploration, and 

development." London, 1910. 
Grenfell, Wilfred T. "Labrador; the country and the people." 

New York, 1912. 

Hawkes, E. W. "The Invi ting-In Feast of the Alaskan Es- 
kimo." Memoir 45, Anthropological Series No. 3, Geolo- 
gical Survey, Canada. 
Hutton, S. K. "Among the Eskimo of Labrador." New 

York, 1912. 
Leith, C. H. and A. T. "A summer and winter in Hudson 

bay." Madison, 1912. 
Low, A. P. "Report on the explorations in the Labrador 

peninsula." Annual Report of the Geological Survey of 

Canada, 1895. 
Mason, Otis T. "The ulu or woman's knife of the Eskimo." 

Report of the United States National Museum, 1890. 
McLean, John. "Notes of a twenty-five years' service in the 

Hudson's Bay territories." London, 1849. 
Murdoch, John. "The Point Barrow Eskimo." 9th Annual 

Report of the Bureau of American Ethnology, Washington, 

Nelson, E. W. "The Eskimo about Bering strait." 18th 

Annual Report of the Bureau of American Ethnology, 

Washington, D.C. 
Rasmussen, Knud. "The people of the polar north." London, 

Rink, H. "Tales and traditions of the Eskimo." London, 


Russel, Frank. "Explorations in the far north." Uni- 
versity of Iowa, 1898. 
Thalbitzer, William. "The Ammassalik Eskimo." Copenhagen, 

Turner, Lucien M. "Ethnology of the Ungava district." 

llth Annual Report of the Bureau of American Ethnology, 

Washington, D.C. 
Wintemberg, W. J. "Bone and harpoon heads of the Ontario 

Indians." Archaeological Report of the Provincial Museum, 

Toronto, 1905. 





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a. Child's sealskin bonnet from Hamilton inlet. Depth 7 inches. 

b. Baby's fur cap from Cape Chidley. 

c. Hareskin cap from Cape Wolstenholme. 

d. Birdskin cap from Mansel island. 

e. Squirrelskin cap from Hamilton inlet. 

Division of Anthropology, Museum Xos. IV B 237, 299, 293; IV C 752; IV B 

Collected by E. W. Hawkes. 




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a. Gut raincoat from Cape Wolstenholme. Length 31 inches. 

b. Gut trousers from Cape Wolstenholme. 

Division of Anthropology, Museum Nos. IV B 294, 295. 
Collected by E. W. Hawkes. 



a. Slipper worn inside boot, from east coast of Labrador. Length 10 inches. 

b. Corrugated sole from Ungava. 

c. Fur slipper from east coast of Labrador. 

d. Child's shoe from Hamilton inlet. 

e. Woman's shoe from Hamilton inlet. 

f. Caribou moccasin from Hamilton inlet. 

Division of Anthropology, Museum Nos. IV B 222, 287, 223, 243, 241, 274. 
Collected by E. W. Hawkes. 



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a. Bag made from leg of deer, from Cape Chid ley. Depth 14 inches. 

b. Sealskin bag from east coast of Labrador. 
Division of Anthropology, Museum Nos. IV B 452, 351. 
Collected by E. W. Hawkes. 



a. Sealskin mitten from east coast of Labrador. Length 17 inches. 

b and c. Sealskin mitten from Hamilton inlet. 

d. Sealskin mitten from east coast of Labrador. 

Division of Anthropology, Museum Nos. IV B 220, 256, 255, 221. 

Collected by E. W. Hawkes. 



A. Completed snow-house with boy sitting on key-block. By permission 
of S. H. Parsons, St. Johns, Newfoundland. 


B. Caribou skin tents of Eskimo fishermen, Cape Childey. By permission 
of the Moravian Mission. 





A. Dog-team viewed from behind, showing method of hitching and position 
of team. By permission of R. P. Holloway, St. Johns, New- 


B. Process of building a komatik. By permission of S. H. Parsons, St. 
Johns, Newfoundland. 




A. a. Model of kayak, from Norton sound, Alaska. Length 30 inches. 

b. Model of kayak from Ungava bay. 

Division of Anthropology, Museum Nos. IV E 135; IV B 59. 
Collected by F. Mercier (a) and A. P. Low (b). 



a. Model of komatik with seal load, from Cape Chidley. 


b. Wooden model of sled or komatik, from Labrador. 
Division of Anthropology, Museum Nos. IV B 327, 72. 
Collected by E. W. Hawkes (a) and A. P. Low (b). 

Length 18 



a. Model of kayak from the Arctic Red river. Length 2\% inches. 

b. Model of deerskin baidarka, probably Aleut. 

c. Model of umiak or sealskin boat from Norton sound, Alaska. 
Division of Anthropology, Museum Nos. IV D 16; IV X 50; IV E 134. 
Collected by H. A. Conroy (a), S. H. Harris (b), and F. Mercier (c). 



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a. Quiver from Labrador. Length 40 inches. 

b. Ptarmigan snare from Labrador. 

c. Sling from Cape Wolstenholme. 

Division of Anthropology, Museum Xos. IV B 109, 111, 496. 
Collected by A. P. Low (a and b) and E. W. Hawkes (c). 




A. a. Stone lamp from Cape Chidley. 

b. Large stone lamp with ridge, from Okkak, Labrador. Length 18 


Division of Anthropology, Museum Nos. IV B 476, 499. 
Collected by E. W. Hawkes. 


B. a. Small stone lamp from Okkak, Labrador. Length 10 inches. 

b. Stone lamp from Cape Chidley. 

c. Model of soapstone lamp from Okkak. 

d. Soapstone lamp from Chesterfield inlet. 

Division of Anthropology, Museum Nos. IV B 501, 502, 329; IV C 776. 
Collected by E. W. Hawkes. 



a. Stone kettle from Cape Chidley. Length 12J inches. 

b. Large stone kettle from Okkak, Labrador. 
Division of Anthropology, Museum Nos. IV B 503, 500. 
Collected by E. \V. Hawkes. 






a. Large wooden spoon from Hamilton inlet. Length 15 inches. 

b. Wooden spoon from Hamilton inlet. 

c. Wooden dish from Hamilton inlet. 

Division of Anthropology, Museum Nos. IV B 310 b, 308 h, 307. 
Collected by E. W. Hawkes. 





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a. Ivory needle case from east coast of Hudson bay. Length 4 inches. 

b. Ivory needle case from Labrador coast, probably Ramah. 

c. Ivory needle case from east coast of Hudson bay. 

d. Ivory needle case from Labrador coast, probably Ramah. 

e. Ivory needle case from east coast of Hudson bay. 

f. Ivory needle case from Labrador coast, probably Ramah. 

g. Ivory comb from east coast of Labrador. 

h. Ivory pendant from east coast of Labrador. 

i. Stone pipe from Chesterfield inlet. 

Division of Anthropology, Museum Nos. IV B 36, 135, 41, 136, 43, 

137, 17, 6; IV C 781. 
Collected by A. P. Low (a-h) and E. W. Hawkes (i). 


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A. a. Ivory carving of whale from Southampton. Length 2 inches. 

b. Ivory carving of walrus from east coast of Labrador. 

c. Ivory model of seal from coast of Labrador, probably Ramah. 

d. Stone carving of fish from east coast of Labrador. 

e. Ivory carving of narwhal from Southampton. 

f. Ivory carving of white whale from east coast of Labrador. 
Division of Anthropology, Museum Nos. IV C 55; IV B 535 (b and f), 131 d, 

534; IV C 52. 

Collected by Capt. G. Comer (a and e), E. W. Hawkes (b, d, and f), and A. P. 
Low (c). 

B. a. Ivory carving of fox from east coast of Labrador. Length 1\ inches. 

b. Ivory carving of polar bear, from Southampton. 

c. Ivory carving of reindeer, from east coast of Labrador. 

d. Ivory carving of bear from Hudson bay. 

e. Ivory carving of musk-ox from Southampton. 

f and g. Ivory carvings of wolves on the trail, from Southampton. 
Division of Anthropology, Museum Nos. IV B 535 (a and c); IV C 53 (b), 

51 (d); IV B 315 (e); IV C 57, 59 (b, g). 
Collected by E. W. Hawkes (a and c) and Capt. G. Comer (b, d, e, f, and g). 







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Coiled basketry from Hamilton inlet. Length of a, 7 inches. 
Division of Anthropology, Museum Nos. IV B 180, 181, 184, 183. 
Collected by E. W. Hawkes. 




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a. Ivory "cup and ball" game, from Labrador coast, probably Ramah. 

Length 4? inches. 

b. Six ivory dominoes belonging to set of 19, from east coast of Hudson bay. 

c. Two sets of ivory ducks belonging to game, first and fifth belonging to set 

of 10, rest to set of 7, from east coast of Hudson bay, and from 
Labrador coast. 

d. Miniature human figures used in game, from east coast of Hudson bay. 
Division of Anthropology, Museum Nos. IV B 134, 8; IV B 16, 13, 132, 15, 

132, 11; IV B 25, 31, 26. 
Collected by A. P. Low. 







a. Feet of horned owl, used as amulet, from east coast of Labrador. Length 

6 inches, 
b and c. Soapstone figures, used as fetishes, from Aillik, near Hopedale, 


Division of Anthropology, Museum Nos. IV B 533, 319, 320. 
Collected by E. W. Hawkes. 



A. Eskimo walled grave, Baffin island. Taken by E. W. Hawkes. 


B. Eskimo women at Moravian Mission in northern Labrador cutting up 

white whales. 
Gift of the Moravian Mission 


The Geological Survey was established in 1842 and "Reports 
of Progress" were issued, generally in annual volumes, from that 
date to 1885, the first report being that for the year 1843 pub- 
lished in 1845. Beginning with the year 1885, "Annual Reports" 
(new series) were published in volumes until 1905, the last being 
Vol. XVI, 1904. Many of the individual reports and maps pub- 
lished before 1905 were issued separately and from 1905 to the 
present, all have been published as separates and no annual 
volume has been issued. Since 1910, the reports have been issued 
as Memoirs and Museum Bulletins, each subdivided into series, 
thus : 

Memoir 41, Geological Series 38. 

Memoir 54, Biological Series 2. 

Museum Bulletin 5, Geological Series 21. 

Museum Bulletin 6, Anthropological Series 3. 

In addition to the publications specified above, a Summary 
Report is issued annually; and miscellaneous publications of 
various kinds including Reports of Explorations, Guide Books, 
etc., have been issued from time to time. 

Publications Issued Since 1909. 


MEMOIR 1. Geological Series 1. Geology of the Nipigon basin. Ontario, 

1910 by Alfred W. G. Wilson. 
MEMOIR 2. Geological Series 2. Geology and ore deposits of Hedley mining 

district, British Columbia, 1910 by Charles Camsell. 
MEMOIR 3. Geological Series 3. Palaeoniscid fishes from the Albert shales 

of New Brunswick, 1910 by Lawrence M. Lambe. 
MEMOIR 4. Geological Series 7. Geological reconnaissance along the line of 

the National Transcontinental railway in western Quebec, 

1911 by W. J. Wilson. 
MEMOIR 5. Geological Series 4. Preliminary memoir on the Lewes and 

Nordenskiold Rivers coal district, Yukon Territory, 1910 

by D. D. Cairnes. 
MEMOIR 6. Geological Series 5. Geology of the Haliburton and Bancroft 

areas, Province of Ontario, 1910 by Frank D. Adams and 

Alfred E. Barlow. 
MEMOIR 7. Geological Series 6. Geology of St. Bruno mountain, Province 

of Quebec, 1910 by John A. Dresser. 
MEMOIR 8. Geological Series 8. The Edmonton coal field, Alberta, 1911 

by D. B. Dowling. 
MEMOIR 9. Geological Series 9. Bighorn coal basin, Alberta, 1911 by 

G. S. Malloch. 

MEMOIR 10. Geological Series 10. An instrumental survey of the shore- 
lines of the extinct lakes Algonquin and Nipissing in south- 
western Ontario, 1911 by J. W. Goldthwait. 
MEMOIR 11. Topographical Series 1. Triangulation and spirit levelling 

of Vancouver island, B.C., 1909, issued 1910 by R. H. 

MEMOIR 12. Geological Series 11. Insects from the Tertiary lake deposits 

of the southern interior of British Columbia, collected by 

Mr. Lawrence M. Lambe, in 1906, issued 1911 by Anton 

MEMOIR 13. Geological Series 14. Southern Vancouver island, 1912 by 

Charles H. Clapp. 
MEMOIR 14. Biological Series 1. New species of shells collected by Mr. 

John Macoun at Barkley sound, Vancouver island, British 

Columbia, 1911 by William H. Dall and Paul Bartsch. 
MEMOIR 15. Geological Series 12. On a Trenton Echinoderm fauna at 

Kirkfield, Ontario, 1911 by Frank Springer. 
MEMOIR 16. Geological Series 13. The clay and shale deposits of Nova 

Scotia and portions of New Brunswick, 1911 by Heinrich 

Ries assisted by Joseph Keele. 
MEMOIR 17. Geological Series 28. Geology and economic resources of the 

Larder Lake district, Ont., and adjoining portions of Pontiac 

county, Que., 1913 by Morley E. Wilson. 
MEMOIR 18. Geological Series 19. Bathurst district, New Brunswick, 1913 

by G. A. Young. 
MEMOIR 19. Geological Series 26. Geology of Mother Lode and Sunset 

mines, Boundary district, B.C., 1914 by O. E. LeRoy. 
MEMOIR 20. Geological Series 41. Gold fields of Nova Scotia, 1914 by W. 



MEMOIR 21. Geological Series 15. The geology and ore deposits of Phoenix 

Boundary district, British Columbia, 1912 by O. E. LeRoy. 
MEMOIR 22. Geological Series 27 . Preliminary report on the serpentines and 

associated rocks in southern Quebec, 1914 by J. A. Dresser. 
MEMOIR 23. Geological Series 23. Geology of the coast and islands between 

the Strait of Georgia and Queen Charlotte sound, B.C., 

1914 by J. Austen Bancroft. 
MEMOIR 24. Geological Series 16. Preliminary report on the clay and shale 

deposits of the western provinces, 1912 by Heinrich Ries 

and Joseph Keele. 
MEMOIR 25. Geological Series 21. Report on the clay and shale deposits 

of the western provinces, Part II, 1914 by Heinrich Ries 

and Joseph Keele. 
MEMOIR 26. Geological Series 34. Geology and mineral deposits of the 

Tulameen district, B.C., 1913 by C. Camsell. 
MEMOIR 27. Geological Series 17. Report of the Commission appointed 

to investigate Turtle mountain, Frank, Alberta, 1911, issued 

MEMOIR 28. Geological Series 18. The Geology of Steeprock lake, Ontario 

by Andrew C. Lawson. Notes on fossils from limestone of 

Steeprock lake, Ontario, 1912 by Charles D. Walcott. 
MEMOIR 29. Geological Series 32. Oil and gas prospects of the northwest 

provinces of Canada, 1913 by W. Malcolm. 
MEMOIR 30. Geological Series 40. The basins of Nelson and Churchill 

rivers, 1914 by William Mclnnes. 
MEMOIR 31. Geological Series 20. Wheaton district, Yukon Territory, 

1913 by D. D. Cairnes. 
MEMOIR 32. Geological Series 25. Portions of Portland Canal and Skeena 

Mining divisions, Skeena district, B.C., 1914 by R. G. 

MEMOIR 33. Geological Series 30. The geology of Gowganda Mining 

Division, 1913 by VV. H. Collins. 
MEMOIR 34. Geological Series 63. The Devonian of southwestern Ontario, 

1915 by C. R. Stauffer. 
MEMOIR 35. Geological Series 29. Reconnaissance along the National 

Transcontinental railway in southern Quebec, 1913 by John 

A. Dresser. 
MEMOIR 36. Geological Series 33. Geology of the Victoria and Saanich 

map-areas, Vancouver island, B.C., 1914 by C. H. Clapp. 
MEMOIR 37. Geological Series 22. Portions of Atlin district, B.C., 1913 

by D. D. Cairnes. 

MEMOIR 38. Geological Series 31. Geology of the North American Cor- 
dillera at the forty-ninth parallel, Parts I and II, 1913 by 

Reginald Aldworth Daly. 
MEMOIR 39. Geological Series 35. Kewagama Lake map-area, Quebec, 

1914^by M. E. Wilson. 
MEMOIR 40. Geological Series 24. The Archaean geology of Rainy lake, 

1914 by Andrew C. Lawson. 
MEMOIR 41. Geological Series 38. The "Fern Ledges" Carboniferous flora 

of St. John, New Brunswick, 1914 by Marie C. Stopes. 
MEMOIR 42. Anthropological Series 1. The double-curve motive in north- 
eastern Algonkian art, 1914 by Frank G. Speck. 
MEMOIR 43. Geological Series 36. St. Hilaire (Beloeil) and Rougemont 

mountains, Quebec, 1914 by J. J. O'Neill. 

MEMOIR 44. Geological Series 37. Clay and shale deposits of New Bruns- 
wick, 1914^-by J. Keele. 
MEMOIR 45. Anthropological Series 3. The inviting-in feast of the Alaska 

Eskimo, 1914 by E. W. Hawkes. 


MEMOIR 46. Anthropological Series 7. Classification of Iroquoian radicals 

and subjective pronominal prefixes, 1915 by C. M. Barbeau. 
MEMOIR 47. Geological Series 39. Clay and shale deposits of the western 

provinces, Part III, 1914 by Heinrich Ries. 
MEMOIR 48. Anthropological Series 2. Some myths and tales of the Ojibwa 

of southeastern Ontario, 1914 by Paul Radin. 
MEMOIR 49. Anthropological Series 4. Malecite tales, 1914 by W. H. 

MEMOIR SO. Geological Series 51. Upper White River district, Yukon, 

1915 by D. D. Cairnes. 
MEMOIR 51. Geological Series 43. Geology of the Nanaimo map-area, 1914 

by C. H. Clapp. 
MEMOIR 52. Geological Series 42. Geological notes to accompany map 

of Sheep River gas and oil field, Alberta. 1914 by D. B. 

MEMOIR 53. Geological Series 44. Coal fields of Manitoba, Saskatchewan, 

Alberta, and eastern British Columbia (revised edition), 

1914 by D. B. Dowling. 
MEMOIR 54. Biological Series 2. Annotated list of flowering plants and 

ferns of Point Pelee, Ont., and neighbouring districts, 1914 

by C. K. Dodge. 
MEMOIR 55. Geological Series 46. Geology of Field map-area, Alberta and 

British Columbia, 1914 by John A. Allan. 
MEMOIR 56. Geological Series 56. Geology of Franklin mining camp, B.C., 

1915 by Chas. W. Drysdale. 
MEMOIR 57. Geological Series 50. Corundum, its occurrence, distribution, 

exploitation, and uses, 1915-^by A. E. Barlow. 
MEMOIR 58. Geological Series 48. Texada island, 1915 by R. G. McCon- 

MEMOIR 59. Geological Series 55. Coal fields and coal resources of Canada, 

1915 by D. B. Dowling. 
MEMOIR 60. Geological Series 47. Arisaig-Antigonish district, 1915 by 

M. Y. Williams. 
MEMOIR 61. Geological Series 45. Moose Mountain district, southern 

Alberta (second edition), 1914 by D. D. Cairnes. 
MEMOIR 62. Anthropological Series 5. Abnormal types of speech in Nootka, 

1915 by E. Sapir. 
MEMOIR 63. Anthropological Series 6. Noun reduplication in Comox, a 

Salish language of Vancouver island, 1915 by E. Sapir. 
MEMOIR 64. Geological Series 52. Preliminary report on the clay and shale 

deposits of the province of Quebec, 1915 by J. Keele. 
MEMOIR 65. Geological Series 53. Clay and shale deposits of the western 

provinces, Part IV, 1915 by H. Ries. 
MEMOIR 66. Geological Series 54. Clay and shale deposits of the western 

provinces, Part V, 1915 by J. Keele. 
MEMOIR 67. Geological Series 49. The Yukon-Alaska Boundary between 

Porcupine and Yukon rivers, 1915 by D. D. Cairnes. 
MEMOIR 68. Geological Series 59. A geological reconnaissance between 

Golden and Kamloops, B.C., along the line of the Canadian 

Pacific railway, 1915 by R. A. Daly. 
MEMOIR 69. Geological Series 57. Coal fields of British Columbia, 1915 

D. B. Dowling. 
MEMOIR 70. Anthropological Series 8. Family hunting territories and social 

life of the various Algonkian bands of the Ottawa valley, 

1915 by F. G. Speck. 
MEMOIR 71. Anthropological Series 9. Myths and folk-lore of the Timis- 

kaming Algonquin and Timagami Ojibwa, 1915 by F. G. 


MEMOIR 72. Geological Series 60. The artesian wells of Montreal, 1915 

by C. L. Gumming. 
MEMOIR 73. Geological Series 58. The Pleistocene and Recent deposit! of 

the island of Montreal, 1915 by J. Stansfield. 
MEMOIR 74. Geological Series 61. A list of Canadian mineral occurrence*, 

1915 by R. A. A. Johnston. 
MEMOIR 75. Anthropological Series 10. Decorative art of Indian tribes of 

Connecticut, 1915 by Frank G. Speck. 
MEMOIR 76. Geological Series 62. Geology of the Cranbrook map-area, 

1915 by S. J. Schofield. 
MEMOIR 77. Geological Series 64. Geology and ore deposits of Rossland, 

B.C., 1915 by C. W. Drysdale. 
MEMOIR 78. Geological Series 66. Wabana iron ore of Newfoundland, 1915 

by A. O. Hayes. 
MEMOIR 79. Geological Series 65. Ore deposits of the Beaverdell map-area, 

B.C., 1915 by L. Reinecke. 
MEMOIR 80. Anthropological Series 11. Huron and Wyandot mythology, 

1915 by C. M. Barbeau. 
MEMOIR 81. Geological Series 67. Oil and gas fields of Ontario and Quebec, 

1915 by Wyatt Malcolm. 
MEMOIR 82. Geological Series 68. Rainy River district, Ontario. Surficial 

geology and soils, 1915 by W. A. Johnston. 
MEMOIR 83. Geological Series 70. Upper Ordovician formations in Ontario 

and Quebec, 1916 by A. F. Foerste. 
MEMOIR 84. Geological Series 69. An exploration of the Tazin and Taltson 

rivers, North West Territories, 1916 by Charles Camsell. 
MEMOIR 85. Geological Series 71. Road material surveys in 1914, 1916 by 

L. Reinecke. 

MEMOIR 86. Anthropological Series 12. Iroquois foods and food prepar- 
ation, 1916 by F. W. Waugh. 
MEMOIR 87. Geological Series 73. Geology of the Flathead coal basin, 

British Columbia, 1916 by J. D. MacKenzie. 
MEMOIR 88. Geological Series 72. Geology of Graham island, British 

Columbia, 1916 by J. D. MacKenzie. 
MEMOIR 89. Geological Series 75. Wood Mountain- Willowbunch Coal 

area, Saskatchewan, 1916 by Bruce Rose. 
MEMOIR 90. Anthropological Series 13. Time perspective in aboriginal 

American culture, a study in method, 1916 by E. Sapir. 
MEMOIR 91. Anthropological Series 14. The Labrador Eskimo by E. W. 



The Museum Bulletins, published by the Geological Survey, are num- 
bered consecutively and are given a series number in addition, thus: Geological 
Series No. 1, 2, 3, etc.; Biological Series No. 1, 2, 3, etc.; Anthropological 
Series No. 1, 2, 3, etc. 

In the case of Bulletins 1 and 2, which contain articles on various subjects, 
each article has been assigned a separate series number. 

The first Bulletin was entitled Victoria Memorial Museum Bulletin ; 
subsequent issues have been called Museum Bulletins. 

Mus. BULL. 1. Geological Series 1. The Trenton crinoid, Ottawacrinus, 
(Issued 1913). W. R. Billings by F. A. Bather. 

Geological Series 2. Note on Merocrinus, Walcott by F. A. 

Geological Series 3. The occurrence of Helodont teeth at 

Roche Miette and vicinity, Alberta by L. M. Lambe. 
Geological Series 4. Notes on Cyclocystoides by P. E. 

Geological Series 5. Notes on some new and old Trilobites in 

the Victoria Memorial Museum by P. E. Raymond. 
Geological Series 6. Description of some new Asaphidae by 

P. E. Raymond. 
Geological Series 7. Two new species of Tetradium by P. E. 

Geological Series 8. Revision of the species which have been 

referred to the genus Bathyurus (preliminary report) 

by P. E. Raymond. 
Geological Series 9. A new Brachiopod from the base of the 

Utica by A. E. Wilson. 
Geological Series 10. A new genus of dicotyledonous plant 

from the Tertiary of Kettle river, British Columbia 

by W. J. Wilson. 
Geological Series 11. A new species of Lepidostrobus by 

W. J. Wilson. 
Geological Series 12. Prehnite from Adams sound, Admiralty 

inlet, Baffin island, Franklin by R. A. A. Johnston. 
Biological Series 1. The marine algae of Vancouver island 

by F. S. Collins. 
Biological Series 2. New species of mollusks from the Atlantic 

and Pacific coasts of Canada by W. H. Dall and P. 

Biological Series 3. Hydroids from Vancouver island and 

Nova Scotia by C. McLean Fraser. 

Anthropological Series 1. The archaeology of Blandford town- 
ship, Oxford county, Ontario by W. J. Wintemberg. 
Mus. BULL. 2. Geological Series 13. The origin of granite (micropegmatite) 
(Issued 1914). in the Purcell sills by S. J. Schofield. 

Geological Series 14. Columnar structure in limestone by 

E. M. Kindle. 
Geological Series 15. Supposed evidences of subsidence of the 

coast of New Brunswick within modern time by J. W. 

Geological Series 16. The Pre-Cambrian (Beltian) rocks of 

southeastern British Columbia and their correlation by 

S. J. Schofield. 
Geological Series 17. Early Cambrian stratigraphy in the 

North American Cordillera, with discussion of Albertella 

and related faunas by L. D. Burling. 
Geological Series 18. A preliminary study of the variations 

of the plications of Parastrophia hemiplicata, Hall 

by A. E. Wilson. 
Anthropological Series 2. Some aspects of puberty fasting 

among the Ojibwa by Paul Radin. 
Mus. BULL. 3. Geological Series 19. The Anticosti Island faunas, 1914 by 

W. H. Twenhofel. 
Mus. BULL. 4. Geological Series 20. The Crowsnest volcanics, 1914 by J. D. 


Mus. BULL. 5. Geological Series 21. A Beatricea-like organism from the 
middle Ordovician, 1914 by P. E. Raymond. 

Mus. BULL. 6. Anthropological Series 3. Prehistoric and present commerce 
among the Arctic Coast Eskimo, 1915 by V. Stefansson. 

Mus. BULL. 7. Biological Series 4. A new species of Dendragapus (Dendra- 
gapus Obscurus Flemingi) from southern Yukon Terri- 
tory, 1914 by P. A. Taverner. 

Mus. BULL. 8. Geological Series 22. The Huronian formations of Timiskam- 
ing region, Canada, 1914 by W. H. Collins. 

Mus. BULL. 9. Anthropological Series 4. The Glenoid Fossa in the skull of 
the Eskimo, 1915 by F. H. S. Knowles. _ 

Mus. BULL. 10. Anthropological Series 5. The social organization of the 
Winnebago Indians, an interpretation, 1915 by P 

Mus. BULL. 11. Geological Series 23. Physiography of the Beaverdell map- 
area and the southern part of the Interior plateaus of 
British Columbia, 1915 by L. Reinecke. 

Mus. BULL. 12. Geological Series 24. On Eoceratops Canadensis, gen. npv., 
with remarks on other genera of Cretaceous horned dino- 
saurs, 1915 by L. M. Lambe. 

Mus. BULL. 13. Biological Series 5. The double-crested Cormorant (Phala- 
crocorax Auritus) and its relation to the salmon industries 
on the Gulf of St. Lawrence, 1915 by P. A. Taverner. 

Mus. BULL. 14. Geological Series 25. The occurrence of glacial drift on the 
Magdalen islands, 1915 by J. W. Goldthwait. 

Mus. BULL. 15. Geological Series 26. Gay Gulch and Skookum meteorites, 
1915 by R. A. A. Johnston. 

Mus. BULL. 16. Anthropological Series 6. Literary aspects of North Ameri- 
can mythology, 1915 by P. Radin. 

Mus. BULL. 17. Geological Series 27. The Ordovician rocks of lake Timis- 
kaming, 1915 by M. Y. Williams. 

Mus. BULL. 18. Geological Series 28. Structural relations of the Pre-Cam- 
bnan and Palaeozoic rocks north of the Ottawa and St. 
Lawrence valleys, 1915 by E. M. Kindle and L. D. 

Mus. BULL. 19. Anthropological Series 7. A sketch of the social organization 
of the Nass River Indians, 1915 by E. Sapir. 

Mus. BULL. 20. Geological Series 29. An Eurypterid horizon in the Niagara 
formation of Ontario, 1915 by M. Y. Williams. 

Mus. BULL. 21. Geological Series 30. Notes on the geology and palaeon- 
tology of the lower Saskatchewan River valley, 1915 
by E. M. Kindle. 

Mus. BULL. 22. Geological Series 31. The age of the Killarney granite, 1916 
by W. H. Collins. 

Mus. BULL. 23. Geological Series 32. The Trent Valley outlet of lake 
Algonquin and the deformation of the Algonquin water- 
plane m Lake Simcoe district, Ontario, 1916 by W. A. 

Mus. BULL. 24. Geological Series 33. Late Pleistocene oscillations of sea- 
level in the Ottawa valley, 1916 by W. A. Johnston. 

Report on a geological reconnaissance of the region traversed by the 

National Transcontinental railway between lake Nipigon and Clay lake, 

Ont., 1910 by W. H. Collins. 

Report on the geological position and characteristics of the oil-shale 

deposits of Canada, 1910 by R. W. Ells. 

A reconnaissance across the Mackenzie mountains on the Pelly, Ross, 

and Gravel rivers, Yukon and North West Territories, 1910 by Joseph Keele. 


Summary Report for the calendar year 1909, issued 1910. 

Report on a traverse thrpugh the southern part of the North West Terri- 
tories, from Lac Seul to Cat lake, in 1902, issued 1911 by Alfred W. G. 

Report on a part of the North West Territories drained by the Winisk 
and Upper Attawapiskat rivers, 1911 by W. Mclnnes. 

Report on the geology of an area adjoining the east side of lake Timis- 
kaming, 1911 by Morley E. Wilson. 

Summary Report for the calendar year 1910, issued 1911. 

Summary Report for the calendar year 1911, issued 1912. 

Guide Book No. 1. Excursions in eastern Quebec and the Maritime 
Provinces, parts 1 and 2, 1913. 

Guide Book No. 2. Excursions in the Eastern Townships of Quebec and 
the eastern part of Ontario, 1913. 

Guide Book No. 3. Excursions in the neighbourhood of Montreal and 
Ottawa, 1913. 

Guide Book No. 4. Excursions in southwestern Ontario, 1913. 

Guide Book No. 5. Excursions in the western peninsula of Ontario and 
Manitoulin island, 1913. 

Guide Book No. 8. Toronto to Victoria and return via Canadian Pacific 
and Canadian Northern railways; parts 1, 2, and 3, 1913. 

Guide Book No. 9. Toronto to Victoria and return via Canadian Pacific, 
Grand Trunk Pacific, and National Transcontinental railways, 1913. 

Guide Book No. 10. Excursions in northern British Columbia and 
Yukon Territory and along the north Pacific coast, 1913. 

Summary Report for the calendar year 1912, issued 1914. 

Prospector's Handbook No. 1. Notes on radium-bearing minerals, 
1914 by Wyatt Malcolm. 

The archaeological collection from the southern interior of British Colum- 
bia, 1914 by Harlan I. Smith. 

Summary Report for the calendar year 1913, issued 1915. 

Summary Report for the calendar year 1914, issued 1915. 

Summary Report for the calendar year 1915, issued 1916. 


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